Stingers head to playoffs P. 19
Take a musical journey to Africa P. 16-17
CONTINUOUS ELECTION DRAMA
Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2012
Editorial P. 21
Graphic by Katie Brioux
Shedding light on the shisha craze P. 9
ASFA elections are back
New general election polling dates set for March 5-7 despite bylaws infraction
Marilla Steuter-Martin & Joel Ashak Co-news editors
Eat, sleep, Art Matters
fter confirming last week that the general elections had been postponed indefinitely, Arts and Science Federation of Associations President Alex Gordon told The Concordian on Monday that the polling dates have now been set for March 5, 6 and 7. The campaign period begins for a second time Feb. 29 and runs until Sunday, March 4. Gordon said that the original dates following the postponement were in conflict with the Concordia Student Unionâ€™s nomination period
opinions Bill C-30 to protect Vic-tims is too intrusive P. 22
Volume 29 Issue 22
for its general election and thus new dates had to be chosen. The ASFA president admitted that the current dates are still in violation of the ASFA bylaws that state that the elections must not overlap with the CSU campaign period. Despite ASFAâ€™s commitment to adhering to its bylaws, Gordon said â€œthe breaking of the bylaws is what has to happen right now.â€? Due to â€œextenuating circumstances, we had no option but to push back the dates,â€? said Gordon. â€œThis is the soonest we could properly get the elections running.â€? Although there may be some confusion by the time students head to the polls in the midst
of the CSU campaign period, Gordon is hopeful that there will be no negative impact on voters. He has been in communication with members of the CSU executives who have been â€œvery sympathetic to the situation.â€? The election was postponed due to procedural complications and a lack of communication since chief electoral officer Chris Webster resigned unexpectedly just before polling began on Feb. 15. Gordon had emphasized since elections were first postponed that they were â€œdefinitely
Story continued on P. 4
Protesters occupy Webster library Photos and story on P. 5 theconcordian.com
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Got a news tip? firstname.lastname@example.org CAMPUS
Transcripts and student records to get facelift Changes will make information more transparent, according to university Joel Ashak Co-news editor
ince last week, changes have been implemented to Concordia’s student records and transcripts. According to interim registrar Terry Too, the changes aim to make transcripts more transparent and informative by bringing modifications to GPA information, transfer credits and graduation requirements. “Students should really see these changes with positive eyes,” said Too. “We used to have a graduation GPA that was kind of confusing. We got rid of it to make it only a cumulative GPA, while showing a term GPA that would help those students who only had one bad term. “We’re now also showing class sizes and class averages and it helps students who were doing good compared to their classmates,” added Too. “Class sizes now also show rankings, and if you are the top student in a 300 student class, it makes a great difference than if you are a top student in a 15 student class.” However, what seemed to worry some students, according to Concordia Student Union VP academic Hasan Cheikhzen, is that in order to graduate, students will now have to reach a cumulative GPA of 2.0 that takes into consideration all years spent at Concordia rather than only needing a last annual GPA of 2.0. This modification seemed to concern a number of students, especially those studying at JMSB or in engineering, who tend to have a difficult first year. The changes brought up will
- Terry Too, interim registrar
A TASTE OF TIFFANY’S IN MONTREAL
One of the most famous jewelry stores in the world, Tiffany’s, has finally opened its first free-standing store in Montreal, and it was big. Hundreds of women dragged their husbands to Tiffany & Co. over the week to admire their collection of some of the finest brands of jewelry that exist. After some thought about location, Tiffany’s decided to open inside the Ritz Carlton Residences on Sherbrooke Street. If
pproximately 15,000 Concordia students have been invited to participate in the 2012 National Survey of Student Engagement. The NSSE is a questionnaire given to first- and final-year students that looks at how students evaluate their university experience and the change from first to last year. The survey was conducted at
much a student discusses grades with instructors, to how many community events a student attends, and how well he or she interacts with other students and faculty members. “It’s not just numbers, we get comments as well,” he explained. “Our students have something to say and we’re listening.” Concordia Provost David Graham stated that last year, the response rate of students was 25 per cent.
“We get a very clear picture of what our students are telling us. We can count on the fact that what we’re seeing is true.” - Bradley Tucker, director of institutional planning and analysis at Concordia
also affect students who transfer programs within Concordia. Their GPA will now include the grades of their previous program. Finally, one of the major changes, said Too, concerns graduate students. Instead of having a quiet brief about their degree on their transcripts, those working towards a master’s or PhD will now be provided with a lot more information. It will notably show the basis of admission, the number of credits required, the time limit to finish their degree, the thesis title, the thesis ranking and “a lot
Senior administrators encouraging students to participate in survey Marilla Steuter-Martin Co-news editor
“We’re now also showing class sizes and class averages and it helps students who were doing good compared to their classmates. Class sizes now also show rankings, and if you are the top student in a 300 student class, it makes a great difference than if you are a top student in a 15 student class.”
City in brief
First- and final-year students asked to fill out NSSE
of positive changes that will help students when they apply to institutions outside the university.” Cheikhzen added that although the students were not heavily involved in the process, the changes seem to be convincing enough for the CSU and the students to question the matter. “Overall, we had good feedback from students and student representatives,” said Cheikhzen. “We did receive mixed feelings about the changes over graduation GPA and transferring credit, but nothing major,” he added.
that wasn’t enough, breakfast at Tiffany’s was served Friday, including mimosas for that good old morning buzz. Montreal is the sixth Canadian city to be graced with Tiffany’s presence. The chain was founded in 1837.
CRACKING DOWN ON PRIVATE CLINICS
Quebec’s medicare board is finally taking a stance on illegal user fees paid by some patients in private clinics by leading one of its biggest investigations to date. Patients around Montreal have been said to pay thousands of dollars in fees in private clinics that are usually supposed to be covered under medicare. One of the big-
750 universities across the continent in 2011 and includes 71 questions and five different benchmarks. Bradley Tucker, the director of institutional planning and analysis at Concordia, said there is a lot of merit in the results of the NSSE. “We get a very clear picture of what our students are telling us. We can count on the fact that what we’re seeing is true,” he said. The questions focus on a variety of topics ranging from how
gest crackdowns so far has been at the Rockland MD clinic in the Town of Mount Royal. The Régie de l’assurance maladie du Quebéc concluded this month that this particular clinic charged patients a wide array of expensive fees that contravened the provincial law.
NEW SEAT DISTRIBUTION AT COUNCIL
Concordia Student Union President Lex Gill has issued a presidential decree changing the seat distribution at council, awarding 14 seats to arts and science, three seats to fine arts, six to JMSB and three to engineering and computer science. Gill cited a “procedural oversight” as the reason
“That’s pretty extraordinary for a survey,” he said. “We want to increase the number of students participating. We want to increase the accuracy.” Graham went on to say that students who complete the NSSE before March 1 could win a Chapters-Indigo gift card and all students who complete it by March 31 will be entered to win an Apple iPad 2. The survey was done in 2006, 2008 and 2011 and will now be conducted on an annual basis.
for issuing her decree, which the president has the authority to exercise between council meetings. The distribution was originally supposed to be decided at the February council meeting, but was accidentally left off the agenda.
PENGUINS AT NUIT BLANCHE
Who said penguins can only have fun in the Arctic? The Biodome kicked off Nuit Blanche in style on Saturday by moving the penguins from their usual space inside the centre. The penguins arrived in their special sled and explored their new habitat for the evening to the surprise and delight of many. The event was organized by Space for Life.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian
15,000 march against tuition hikes Over 300 students stop traffic on Jacques Cartier Bridge
Joel Ashak Co-news editor
Quebec students opposed to the tuition hikes promised a strike every Thursday that would grow in intensity with each passing week. They lived up to that promise last week when they took to the streets of downtown Montreal and blocked the Jacques Cartier Bridge for almost an hour. Approximately 15,000 students marched on Feb. 23 and blocked the traffic for more than four hours on major streets such as Ste-Catherine Street and René-Lévesque Boulevard. When the protest officially ended around 4 p.m., a group of about 300 students left the pack shouting “To the bridge! To the bridge!” and headed toward the Jacques Cartier Bridge where they blocked both the north and the south exits. The protesters were met by Montreal riot police, an encounter that ended in a brief clash with some protesters being peppersprayed before they were pushed away from the bridge and back toward Place Émilie-Gamelin, next to Berri-UQAM metro station. The SPVM reported only one arrest. “From now on, our demonstrations will crescendo,” said Simon Jalbert, a protester and a member of l`Association des étudiants en géographie de l’Université de Montréal. “It is important for us to keep the pressure going up against the Charest government.” The move to block the bridge was not planned by the protest organizers from l’Association pour une solidarité syndicale étudiante, who regretted that the actions of a
15,000 STUDENTS PROTESTED AGAINST TUITION HIKES, BLOCKING TRAFFIC FOR MORE THAN FOUR HOURS. PHOTO BY JULIEN APOLLON
small group attracted more attention than a peaceful and orderly march of 15,000 students. “The protest ended before this group of students moved toward the bridge,” said ASSÉ spokesperson Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois. “It’s a shame this action caught so much attention.” Nadeau-Dubois added however that he sympathized with people’s frustration toward the tuition hikes and found the action to block the bridge “understandable.” Stopping traffic on one of Montreal’s busiest bridges during rush hour seems to have alienated the students’ cause for a part of the population, as many felt the action was inappropriate and unrelated to the protest. “Obviously, taking such actions is going to put some people against us, but fortunately [the blocking] did not last too long,” added Jalbert. “This is just our way of warning the government that if they insist on passing the
“It is important for us to keep the pressure going up against the Charest government.”
tuition hikes, we will make their lives harder.” Concordia Student Union President Lex Gill also kept her distance with the action taken by the group of students. “It’s a clear show that students are angry and are willing to go to considerable ends to show their frustration and make this a public issue,” said Gill. “But from my perspective, peaceful and non-disruptive actions like sleep-ins and information campaigns are the values that we should put forward as they are more productive ways of voicing our concerns.”
TERMS AND PROPOSED BYLAW CHANGES
Nadeau-Dubois also added it was not student associations’ role to tell protesters what to do, and that the Liberal government should not be surprised to see more of these disturbances. This Thursday’s demonstration will be held in Quebec City and student organizations already announced a massive protest set to take place in Montreal on March 22. So far, over 55,000 students across the province are reported to be on strike. Concordia students will vote on a general strike mandate on March 7.
Faculty show online support for general strike
CSU and GSA create ‘The Concordia Declaration’
An online declaration calling for support from Concordia’s faculty in the fight against tuition hikes has already gathered more than 160 signatures in less than three weeks. The Concordia Declaration was drafted by the Concordia Student Union, the Graduate Students’ Association and a number of faculty members consulted in the process. It was posted online on Feb. 17, asking university professors, research assistants and teaching assistants to accommodate students who may miss class or assignments due to their involvement in a potential general strike. “The declaration was a response to faculty talking to [the CSU] and
saying they wanted a way of making sure students know that they support them,” said CSU President Lex Gill. “Since we put the declaration online, signatures have been growing really fast. It’s really exciting, we did not expect so many signatures.” Gill explained that the declaration could play a crucial role in influencing the provost’s decision to grant an amnesty as “it shows faculty members on Senate that [a general strike] is something faculty, research and teaching assistants clearly support.” Gill added that there were more signatures pending approval on the website’s account. Concordia spokesperson Chris Mota, however, pointed out that the decision to grant academic amnesty was the provost’s alone and that as of
The issue of filming meetings is a hot topic at Concordia this year and there has been discussion about the possible benefits of broadcasting monthly Senate meetings. The CSU films its meetings live, and some senators feel that Senate should do the same. Others expressed concern at the last two meetings that filming will be distracting, and inhibit frank discussion. Advocates argue that meetings are already open to the public and media and that no harm would be inflicted if cameras were allowed inside the meeting room. A committee will be created to evaluate the challenges and feasibility of filming Senate, the composition of which will be determined by the steering committee.
- Protester Simon Jalbert
Joel Ashak Co-news editor
Senate in brief
late, faculty support for the Concordia Declaration was not going to make him change his mind. “When I spoke with [Graham] last week, he was of the same opinion that he was in the time of Nov. 10, even after knowing about the declaration,” said Mota. “The situation is very clear: faculty are expected to teach and professors are expected to come in and do their jobs. We need to keep providing services for those who choose to continue studying.” Graham could not be reached to comment directly on the declaration. Mota added that for those who choose to “boycott” classes, some individual accommodations could be made “for a day or two,” but something at the level of an academic amnesty is not being considered right
now. The Concordia Declaration, which can be found on concordiadeclaration.wordpress.com, asks for every signatory to leave name, position and comments if desired. Teaching assistant and GSA President Robert Sonin said he signed because he did not want to see Concordia turn into a university “in name only, a for-profit diploma mill with no academic integrity or legitimacy.” “The strike against tuition fee increases is not merely about money,” Sonin said. “It is a struggle against a trend that is cheapening what we do, that is undermining the seriousness and value of higher education and academic research, and that can only value things — including human beings — in terms of money.”
At the Feb. 17 meeting, a series of bylaw changes were passed that will affect Senate’s composition. One of the major changes include increasing the number of voting members from 53 to 55 with two senators who are being appointed from the School of Extended Learning. This discussion also included the topic of terms of limits for senators. It was recommended that full-time faculty members serve on Senate for a maximum of two consecutive three-year terms. It was made clear that senators whose terms end in the summer of 2012 will be given the chance to retain their seats for one additional year.
INTERNATIONAL COLLEGE NAME CHANGE
The Arts and Science Faculty Council’s recommendation to change the name of Loyola International College was approved. The change to Loyola College for Diversity and Sustainability received mixed reception from senators. Those who either did not see the value of the change or thought the new name was overly specific brought up their concerns. The college offers minors in sustainability studies as well as in diversity and the contemporary world. Supporters of the change said that the new name will reflect the college more accurately and draw more interest from students. The motion will next be sent to the Board of Governors for final approval.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Continued from cover
All previous ballots have been voided not cancelled,” but that “all voting that’s taken place so far has been voided.” He went on to say that the complications, one of which was a technical issue with the computers at polling stations that didn’t allow students with minors in arts and science to vote, made it impossible for “procedure to be followed to the fullest.” “We can’t legitimately count [the ballots],” he said. Andrew Roberts, the president of the Geography Undergraduate Student Society, an ASFA member association, feels that the technical difficulties “truly shouldn’t have gotten by.” “Whether an oversight on the part of IT or on the election officers, the validity of voting hinged on this issue and is a primary reason for the delay,” said Roberts. “It can’t be overlooked in the future.” Roberts called the postponement “sad but necessary,” and he is not the only member association representative that feels that way. “It’s unfortunate that things happened that way but I am glad ASFA did not turn a blind eye and pursue the election regardless,” said COMS guild co-president Renée Tousignant. “We would rather have a fair election than a shady one that would see all ASFA associations question the elected executives next year. Overall, we are glad it’s been dealt with that way.” Former ASFA CEO Nick Cuil-
Graphic by Katie Brioux
lerier said Webster’s resignation was partly to blame for the delay. “We need responsible people who want to take on big projects,” Cuillerier said. “It starts with getting people who are interested in student politics to get more involved on the administrative side.” Cuillerier went on to say that he hopes future CEOs understand the responsibility that comes with the position. “Sometimes being CEO can be a thankless job and we need to make sure they get the credit they deserve,” he said. The three deputy electoral officers will continue to oversee the process, advised by VP internal
Schubert Laforest. ASFA DEO Luke Gerald added that the DEOs were looking into hiring someone with more electoral experience and a better understanding of the process involved in order to help them run the general election. One of the reasons Webster was said to resign as CEO was because he disagreed with a decision rendered by ASFA’s judicial committee. The decision was regarding executive candidate Eric Moses Gashirabake’s desire to switch positions during the original campaign period in early February. In its statement released on Feb. 16, the JC found that Gashirabake would be held responsible for
“breaching the spirit of fair play during the course of the electoral process” for switching from VP internal to VP academic and Loyola affairs, a move that had originally been green-lighted by Webster. Gashirabake wrote in an email to The Concordian that he plans to appeal the decision. The JC ruling, issued before the postponement of the general election, stated that 65 votes would be docked from the total number of votes Gashirabake received and that one-fifth of his total campaign expenses would be revoked. Chris Webster could not be reached for comment despite repeated attempts to contact him.
Timeline Oct. 12 and 13, 2011: ASFA byelection held to vote in VP external, VP communications and independent councillor. Oct. 15, 2011: Electoral violations revealed, including hiring of former ASFA VP internal Nicole Devlin as a polling clerk. Oct. 20, 2011: Resignation of CEO Marvin Cidamon, just before council decides to sack him. Dec. 8, 2011: Christopher Webster is appointed CEO by council. Feb. 15 to 17, 2012: General elections kick off, with Charlie Brenchley and Caroline Bourbonniere vying for the presidential position. Feb. 15: Webster resigns hours before polling begins. Feb. 17: Elections are postponed until Feb. 29. All ballots from the original polling dates are voided. Feb. 22: Polling dates are postponed indefinitely when ASFA executives realize that the new dates clash with the nomination period for the Concordia Student Union. Feb. 27: ASFA President Alex Gordon tells The Concordian that despite going against ASFA’s own bylaws, the federation will be holding its elections starting March 5.
New all-in-one printing service coming to ConU Students will be able to use Concordia IDs for printing jobs Marie-Josée Kelly Contributor Students will now be able to do without Concordia printing cards and upload printing funds straight onto their student ID cards. The university is introducing a new all-in-one photocopying, scanning and printing service called DPrint, which enables students to do all three tasks using a single multifunctional device. Once funds have been loaded to their accounts via the cash loaders on campus, students can log into one of the devices and begin to print, scan or copy. Concordia spokesperson Chris Mota said the objective is to offer a centralized, efficient and environmentally-friendly service to students. “Ultimately the goal is to be able to provide students with a one-stop shopping experience and hopefully a very positive one,” said Mota. In order to start using the system, students only need a valid Concordia
student ID and a netname and password. An additional new feature is the ability for students using Concordia’s Wi-Fi network to send print jobs from their personal laptops or any other computer on campus. “If you print from a lab on Loyola campus and you have a class downtown, instead of having to go to that one machine to pick up your job, you can pick it up in the Hall building where your next class is,” explained David Babcock, a Digital Store customer service representative. Preserving credit on old print cards will be a matter of transferring leftover funds to the student account. This account is strictly attached to printing services and is entirely separate from student fees and tuition accounts. Another feature of the service is letting students go over the available credits if the job requires more than what is left in the account, instead of cutting off in the middle of the job. The outstanding credit will then be taken when the card is loaded up again. The implementation process has run into some glitches however, as was to be expected, said Mota, considering the scale of the project. “I liked the old system, it was easy to use,” said Stephanie Saucier,
Photo by Navneet Pall
a second-year contemporary dance student. “The new service was userfriendly too — when it was working. I think this is a normal period of adaptation,” she said. DPrint was being tested at SGW campus and ran into some issues, notably with computer drivers crashing. Mota advised students to keep using the debit printing cards until the
DPrint service is “proven to be reliable and fully supported.” DPrint has not yet been implemented on the Loyola campus. “They’re not going to make any drastic changes at this point because they want to get through the exam periods where people have massive use requirements,” said Mota. “So rather than push the implementation full
speed ahead right now, they’re going to let those departments that are still using the old system get through the crunch and then they will really begin working towards solving the problems,” she said. The target goal is to get through the busiest periods and by September 2012 have the service fully functional across the university.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian
Tuition protesters hit the books Downtown library occupied by CSU organized sleep-in Alyssa Tremblay Staff writer
rmed with sleeping bags, students protesting tuition increases woke up to day two of their occupation of Concordia’s downtown library this morning. Roughly 40 people have set up camp in the J.W. McConnell Library Building to take part in the week-long event organized by the Concordia Student Union. Students plan on staying overnight in the building’s first floor atrium until Friday. By day, the CSU is using the space to hold workshops geared towards social activism. “We pay to have our library open
undergrads will vote on whether to join the more than 55,000 other postsecondary students already on unlimited strike in Quebec. While the daytime activities are open to everyone, a Concordia ID card is required to sign up and spend the night. The university is accommodating the sleep-in, posting a press release alerting people to the protest on the Concordia Now website. The university contacted the CSU about the sleep-in last week, according to Walcott. He said the occupation would have happened with or without the administration’s permission. University spokesperson Chris Mota said their goal is to allow the sleep-in to take place as “safely and unobtrusively as possible.” Occupi-
“We pay to have our library open for 24 hours so we might as well take advantage of that.” - CSU VP external and event organizer Chad Walcott
for 24 hours so we might as well take advantage of that,” said CSU VP external and event organizer Chad Walcott. He said that the sleep-in was purposely timed to coincide with midterms to attract interest for their cause from the increased number of students circulating through the library. The sleep-in doubles as an information campaign about university tuition hikes leading up to next week’s strike vote. On March 7, Concordia
ers will have access to electricity and security will be present both during the day and overnight. Mota said that should any trouble arise, student leaders will be contacted to deal with the situation directly. Walcott maintains that the protesters are “all adults who can govern themselves accordingly” and that people will respect the fact that they are in a library. Occupiers held a general assembly on Monday to set up ground rules for the following days.
THE CSU IS ORGANIZING A SLEEP-IN IN THE DOWNTOWN CAMPUS LIBRARY TO PROTEST AND INFORM STUDENTS ABOUT TUITION HIKES BEFORE THE MARCH 7 VOTE. PHOTO BY NAVNEET PALL
Hall building escalators should be fully functional by September Renovations planned for several floors over the next three years Kalina Laframboise Staff writer The Henry F. Hall building is slated to be renovated and upgraded over the next few years, but the process is complex. The dysfunctional escalators between the mezzanine and fifth floor are a continual source of frustration for Concordia students. The estimated completion date of the current renovations for the escalators between the lobby and fifth floor is September 2012, according to university spokesperson Chris Mota. Timothy Lazier, a history and English specialization student, remarked that “how students see the building depends on what floor they are on and if they can actually get to it.” Lazier said that he’s had classes scattered throughout the Hall building and noticed the difference on the newly redone floors. “Up to the seventh floor, it’s really ugly but I have a bunch of classes on
the renovated floors and they’re nice,” said Lazier. “It feels like you’re in a different building.” The interior and exterior of the 12floor, cube-shaped building is gradually deteriorating due to time, weather and general use. In 1998, the university started renovations to improve the overall state of the Hall building, but students like Cleo Donnelly are not impressed with the current structure. “I get that it’s old but there’s nothing overly special about it. They should just tear it down and build a new one,” she said. According to Martine Lehoux, the university’s director of facilities planning and development, Concordia will refurbish the untouched floors in the near future, but it can only be done when the floors are not occupied. This explains why certain floors of the Hall building were revamped in the last decade while others have yet to undergo major repairs. When they were once occupied by various science departments, the
Photo by Navneet Pall
eighth, eleventh and twelfth floors were renovated when the Richard J. Renaud Science Pavillon at the Loyola campus opened in 2003. The western section of 7th floor was upgraded after the department of applied human sciences moved to the Loyola campus in 2005.
The escalators between the sixth and seventh floors have been working since last Thursday, according to Mota. The university is scheduled to improve the amphitheatre on the ninth floor this summer and during 2013, upgrades are planned for the amphithe-
atre on the first floor and the western portion of the basement that belongs to the engineering department. Projects awaiting funding approval include renovations for the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh floors of the Hall building for 2014 to 2015.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
ConU proposes plan to accept students’ preferred names University to make adjustments to name policy on non-official documents Brandon Judd Staff writer Among the first things Ben Boudreau did when he arrived at Concordia was go to the student centre to modify his original name on his student record. Boudreau, a transgender student, was told he couldn’t change the information without first having his name changed legally, a process which can be both lengthy and expensive. He then teamed up with the 2110 Centre for Gender Advocacy and the Concordia Student Union to push for the right to use the name he identifies with, rather than the one he was born with. On Feb. 15, Concordia issued a press release announcing that as of this fall, students would be allowed to use a preferred name on certain non-official documents such as class lists, and would also be permitted to use their legal initial rather than their full legal name on their ID cards. The proposition has been met with derision and disbelief from Boudreau, the student whose complaints brought about the university’s announcement. He called the university’s proposal a “band-aid” solution, but said he does believe the administration is willing to effect significant change for its trans students. “I’m angered by it, but I do think it’s great they’re doing something,” he said. “Hopefully with this information out in the public eye, it will change things.”
More specifically, Boudreau expressed concerns that with the current proposal, his name will remain unchanged on the MyConcordia portal, and the university could still end up sending letters to his home addressed to his legal name. Until now, Ben has also had to email his professors to explain to them that the name on the class list is one he no longer identifies with. He said when professors failed to read his email, his choice at roll call was to either feign absence or be outed in class, an experience he described as horrible. “You always have to clear out an excess amount of emotional space to see how people are going to react to it,” he said. “It hurts my chances of being seen as normal or potentially having friends throughout the rest of my degree.” It remains unclear to Boudreau how effective the university’s new method of drafting class lists could prove to be in the classroom. The university initially told The Concordian that the Ministry of Education requires them to continue using the student’s legal name on official documents such as transcripts. The ministry, however, refuted this. They said while the university is required to submit information using legal names for the purposes of the ministry’s databases, the use of names on school documents is up to the university. “When [a university] gives us the information, we really need to have
their legal name,” said ministry spokesperson Esther Chouinard. “But it isn’t up to the ministry to decide how they deal with student names within their organization.” Other university policies, such as the use of the legal name on all official mail, and the tension which can arise during exam period when a person’s identity is checked against their ID, can negatively affect any transgender
student at Concordia, explained Boudreau. Gabrielle Bouchard, the peer support and trans advocacy coordinator at the 2110 Centre, said she supported any changes to policy which make transgender students feel more at ease. “It’s like asking someone to out their sexual orientation in order to go through school,” Bouchard said. “Would we feel comfortable as a soci-
ety if, to access your class, you have to say you’re gay or straight or kink? We’re asking trans students to show to the world over and over again that at one point in their lives they were stressed and unhappy [with their identity].” Boudreau, along with members of the 2110 Centre and the CSU, plans to take the issue to Senate in the near future to advocate for more major changes to the university’s policies.
THE SPROTT MBA GET THE KNOWLEDGE TO COMPETE The Sprott MBA delivers a high quality management education with the choice and flexibility to fit your program to your personal career goals. Choose from concentrations in: t'JOBODJBM.BOBHFNFOU t*OUFSOBUJPOBM#VTJOFTT t*OUFSOBUJPOBM%FWFMPQNFOU.BOBHFNFOU t.BOBHFNFOU"DDPVOUJOH $."
t.BOBHFNFOUBOE$IBOHF /PXPSLFYQFSJFODFJTSFRVJSFE to enter the full-time stream. Plus, you’ll graduate with relevant work experience through the .#"*OUFSOTIJQ1SPHSBN. $PNFUPPVSJOGPTFTTJPOUPMFBSONPSF Wednesday March 14, 2012 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. Hotel Omni Mont-Royal , Room 303 RSVP to email@example.com
ConU organizes fourth annual case competition
John Molson School of Business team fails to qualify for finals Joel Ashak Co-news editor The University of Maastricht won the fourth annual John Molson Undergraduate Case Competition last Saturday at the Hilton Bonaventure Hotel. After a close final, the Dutch undergraduate students won the week-long competition that saw 24 universities from around the world compete in a time-constrained contest that made students work on real-life strategy cases presented to a real company. This year, students presented in front of a jury composed of members of the ground engineering and environment services company Golder Associates, as well as JMSB professors. “The JMUCC is one of the largest undergraduate business competitions in the world,” said JMUCC VP public relations Riddhi Jhunjhunwala. “The fact that students have to work on reallife cases in front of a jury of professionals who know the company in and out makes it a real challenge and an excellent learning experience.”
The Concordia JMSB team and the HEC Montreal team, the two universities representing Montreal schools in the competition, did not make it to the finals, although two of the six finalists were Canadian universities. After winning the first round on Feb. 20, the JMSB students lost two consecutive rounds against the universities of Maastricht and Purdue. The last three days of the competition saw the finalists compete a second time, where they were to present Golder Associates a business strategy that would expand the company’s economic and environmental viability. Each team of four had only 24 hours to prepare this last case. The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology made it to second place, followed by Carleton University. The winners of the case competition received JMUCC trophies, Micheal Kors watches and a free ticket to compete in the 2013 JMUCC (instead of paying the $2,500 team registration fee). The prize of best Canadian school was awarded to Carleton University.
tT E e G g O o T t D A t u o t u C E*
THE on6x Code: C
not include comic pull purchases * Does Deal expires December 31st, 2012!
R E STO R I T N E
4986 Ch QuEEN-‐MARY MONTREAL, QC, H3W 1X2 (514) 564-‐0454
940 St. Jean Pointe-‐Claire, QC, h9r 5n8 (514) 505-‐1015 www.THE4THWALL.CA
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Write to the editor: firstname.lastname@example.org FRIENDSHIP
Learning to read the bro and girl codes
The rules that govern our friendships Shaimaa El-Ghazaly Assistant life editor
ros before what? For the longest time now, we’ve all heard about the infamous “bro code.” There are guidelines for every scenario starting from how to be wing-man all the way to when it is acceptable for two heterosexual men to share a dessert. The “bromance” has blossomed so much that every part of male friendships is mapped out for them if they are ever unsure what to do in a given situation. However, the rules are a bit unclear when it comes to the girl code, unless you want to rely on the wise words of Gretchen Wieners from Mean Girls. It’s hard to tell whether the girl code is as solid as the bro code. Geoffrey Greif, author of Buddy System: Understanding Male Friendships and a professor at the University of Maryland School of Social Work, interviewed 386 men and 122 women about same-sex friendships. He says that women are more inclined to be there for a friend by listening and being supportive while men are more inclined to give concrete advice. “Men compete with their friends more openly and have set rules for competing. Women tend to compete more in less clear realms—who is more nurturing, more beautiful, a better cook, etc. So yes, rules are more defined for men than women who
have to navigate trickier terrain than men,” said Greif. Psychology student Margarita Miseros and economics student Chris Papadopoulos gave their perspectives on situations that involve friends and relationships. In general, the female side wasn’t so different from the male side after all, but the details differ slightly. Situation One: Your friend and her significant other broke up. Can you make a move on your friend’s ex? Female perspective: “It depends on how close you were to that friend. An acquaintance? Sure, go for it. If they’re a good friend that you are close to and you trust each other, then it’s definitely a no no. It’s so hurtful.” Male perspective: “There are all kinds of rules saying when it’s okay to hook up with a friend’s ex, whether it’s six months or depending on if he got dumped or he broke it up. Personally, I think the best is to stay morally correct no mater what and not go for a friend’s ex, especially if it’s just for hooking up or sex, as it is only physical. If emotions are involved, then it becomes more complicated.” Situation Two: You like a certain someone. Turns out, your friend likes the same person. How do you deal with that? Female perspective: “Honestly, that’s really a tough one. I guess it’s something you’d figure out when you’re in the situation. But hey, chicks before dicks so I’d defi-
Graphic by Sean Kershaw
nitely try to work it out in a way where our friendship would not be ended.” Male perspective: “That’s a hard one. It will cause problems no matter what but I think the best is to sit down and talk and just come to a decision whether either one of us pursues her or both of us just stay clear. The girl shouldn’t be playing both guys either.” Situation Three: You really don’t like your friend’s significant other. Do you go ahead and inform your friend of your feelings? Female perspective: “I would support my friend no matter what, but keep an eye out in case he did anything really wrong. If my problem with him is that I don’t like his haircut, I’d keep that kind of thing to myself. If I thought he was mistreating her, I’d probably be more vocal about that.” Male perspective: “Yes absolutely. As a friend, it’s almost my duty to give him my opinion when it comes to that. I would tell him maturely and express my opinion with strong points and reasons behind it.” Situation Four: You’re going out to a bar with a friend and they ask you to be their wing-man or wing-woman. What does that entail? Female perspective: “It refers to looking after your friend, making sure they are making good decisions, scoping out for the hot guys, making her look good in front of them by emphasizing how great she is, but making sure she doesn’t do anything she’ll regret.” Male perspective: “I think being a wing-
man is all about making your friend look good. Most of the time the common interpretation is to help him get a girl in bed but I think it extends to creating a positive image of him in public, not just to girls but to friends, whether male or female, to family and to society in general.” Situation Five: You’re at a club and your friend decides to go home with someone they just met, but you don’t approve of them. Would you interfere? Female perspective: “It depends on her state. If she’s drunk, I’ll tell her she can call the guy in the morning and see him another time. If she’s perfectly sober, I’ll tell her my opinion. I’ll make sure she knows what I think and then, in the end, it’s her choice.” Male perspective: “If I think it’s honestly someone they will regret, then I’ll try my best to convince them not to go home with them. If it’s just someone I don’t like in general, then it’s really not my place to interfere. At the end of the day, it’s my friend’s decision to do what he wants, sober or not.” Bottom line? While male friendships and female friendships have their differences, caring about a friend and not hurting them will always prevail any “code.” These rules aren’t written in stone. Every friendship is different, and every situation merits its own solution. But it is nice to have some guidelines to help you make the right decision in a difficult situation. In the end, a good friend will do everything they can to be there, regardless of what the rules say.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
One does not simply make a meme Concordia University memes go viral Leah Batstone Staff writer If you spend hours on the Internet like numerous university students do (don’t lie, we know you aren’t studying for six hours straight), you may have noticed odd images and videos appearing on Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr. These images portray talking cats, highly animated faces of cartoon people or videos of babies doing cute things. They’re viral Internet entertainment called memes, and they’re taking over social media outlets faster than you can imagine. The original definition of a meme came from Richard Dawkins in 1976. He declared a meme to be “an idea, behaviour or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.” It’s a concept used to describe the theoretical unit which transfers cultural aspects between generations. Dawkins’ book, The Selfish Gene, explained how memes are the cousins of genetics; they grow, evolve and replicate in the same way. Internet memes may not be what Dawkins had in mind when writing his definition of a meme, although they do share similar characteristics. Internet memes have been popular since 2001. They are anything from a photo-shopped image, a comical video, or an outrageous article that becomes popular online. The speed of communication on the Internet allows memes to be viewed globally, bringing people together to laugh at the same item within hours. There is more to a meme than a viral video. Over time, memes have developed a language, rules, and trends. An iconic example of meme language is Lolcats. You simply take a picture of your cat and put text around it that is intentionally spelled incorrectly, as if the cat is speaking; Kitten becomes “kitteh” and more becomes “moar.”
Memes aren’t restricted to cat pictures. They include other character images, like Good Guy Greg (a seemingly good guy) or the Success Kid (a cute baby doing a triumphant elbow jab). Each character or image has unspoken guidelines and themes surrounding them and are used to get certain points across. Colin Lankshear, a McGill professor, and Michele Knobel, an education department professor at Montclair State University, both specialize in new literacies and digital technologies. They collaborated on a paper in 2005 titled “Memes and
affinities: Cultural replication and literacy education.” Their work suggests a successful meme requires three components: “Some element of humour, ranging from the quirky and offbeat to the bizarrely funny, a rich kind of intertextuality, such as wry cross-references to different popular culture events, icons or phenomena, and/or anomalous juxtapositions, usually of images.” A recent trend on Facebook is university meme pages. Often started by students, with student contributions, the pages have been emerging online across North America and Great Britain.
The memes tend to mock a specific aspect of the particular university. For instance, the most popular meme on the Concordia Facebook page says “-20 degrees outside, 100 degrees in Guy-Concordia metro.” The title of “The first person in North America to start a website dedicated to university memes” most likely goes to Daniel Braden, an arts student at McGill University. Braden started McGill memes on Tumblr in November 2011 as a way to kill time.
Continued on P. 9
How porn is turning us into performers Is it possible our generation’s sex lives are worse than ever? Georgia Rigg The Ubyssey VANCOUVER (CUP) — No other generation in human history has had so much sex around them. From the increasingly graphic sexual content in movies and TV to the endless depths of pornography online, sex is all around us from an early age. But despite the wealth of sexual voyeurism, it’s possible our sex lives are worse than ever. Most parents spend more time avoiding our questions about sex than answering them. Academic institutions are increasingly terrified of being politically incorrect. Meanwhile, porn dominates over 12 per cent of all websites. It’s quick, it’s free and within seconds, we can have the answers to all of our questions. With over 86 million visitors per day, porn has become sex education for young people. Cindy Gallop, creator of the website “Make Love, Not Porn,” gave a TED talk on this subject that quickly went viral — in part because of her raunchy subject matter. She explicitly described how her sexual experiences with younger men have exposed to her the shocking ramifications that the hardcore porn industry has had on our culture. In the video, Gallop talked of having to regularly decline an attempted “facial” with, “Actually,
no thank you very much, I would much rather you did not come on my face.” But she is especially concerned about the young girl “whose boyfriend wants to come on her face, she does not want him to come on her face, but hardcore porn has taught her that all men love coming on women’s faces, all women love having their faces come on, and therefore she must let him come on her face, and she must pretend to like it.” In an interview with The Ubyssey, Gallop explains that porn has made the job of sex education even harder. “There’s an entire generation growing up that believes that what you see in hardcore pornography is the way that you have sex.” Prior to porn, those parents brave enough to take on the task of educating their children about sex simply had to talk about the logistics. Nowadays, the conversation has to address what the Internet is showing teenagers. As Gallop puts it: “Darling, we know you’re online, we know you’re looking at an awful lot of porn, so we just need to let you know that not all women like being bound, gagged, choked, spit on or gang-banged.” Lori Brotto, a UBC professor from the department of obstetrics and gynecology, suggests that porn itself isn’t necessarily the problem. “It can expose people to new and different forms of stimuli to enhance their sexual arousal response and it can also be useful for couples wishing to add variety and intensity to their sexual experiences.” Where the danger lies is in misunderstanding what your partner wants in their sex life. “If one partner is opposed to pornography and one in favour, then it can create jealousy, resentment and
Graphic by Indiana Joel/The Ubyssey
deception,” says Brotto. “Today’s porn is more than a masturbation aid,” wrote Gary Wilson and Marina Robinson for the online magazine The Good Men Project. “It replaces imagination with multiple tabs, constant searching, fast-forwarding to the perfect scene, a voyeuristic perspective.” The problem we’re now facing is that of a generation of performers. With over 80 per cent
of North American children aged 15–17 having watched hardcore pornography on multiple occasions, and the average age of first exposure being 11, many girls know how to give the perfect blowjob before they’ve even seen a penis in the flesh. They also know what positions to get into, what noises to make and what they are “supposed” to
Continued on P. 9
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian
Continued from P. 8 In an article on digitaltrends.com, Braden said “I’m also fairly confident that my site was the primary catalyst in spreading the university meme craze in Canada and the United States.” Braden accepts occasional public submissions, but the majority of the memes are his own. When it comes to finding inspiration for his memes, Braden said he has an endless supply at McGill. “I think of memes by making general observations about specific instances and trends in campus culture at McGill. McGill is full of many student groups and is home to many protests, therefore the memes generally write themselves,” he said. What about Concordia memes? They can be found on a Facebook page called Concordia University Memes. Students can submit their own, and there’s an assortment of topics, from the dinginess of the Faubourg to the stereotypes looming over certain programs. Memes are intended to be harmless and humourous, but they also increase awareness about issues on campus. “I think the main idea of a meme is you take a daily problem, well-known and easily identifiable by people who live the same ‘basic life’ as you—in our case, Concordia students—and make an image to share things that you see, that make you laugh, or make you angry,” said Hans Jules Bobànovits, an art history student at Concordia. The Concordia meme page has over 3,000 “likes,” and even more viewers. It has become a community for students to vent and mock the trivial aspects of Concordia. The memes shed light on issues students can relate to. “I find the visual meme is a good way to create an emotional response to a situation many people share without having to explain it,” said Concordia student Karim ZeTrad. “Words get in the way, but a picture and a line or two make the reference somewhat of an ‘inside joke’ to Concordia students. You put the meme on Facebook, and people ‘like’ it to discretely show they understand where you’re coming from.”
Continued from P. 8 like and dislike. But when it comes down to actually having sex for real, will we take the cues that porn has given us? Gallop’s experience answers the question resoundingly: yes! “We all feel enormously vulnerable when we get naked,” Gallop says. “Sexual egos are very fragile, and people find it bizarrely difficult to talk about sex with the people they are actually having sex with because you’re terrified of hurting the other person’s feelings, putting them off you, derailing the entire encounter. But at the same time, you want to please your partner, and you’ll seize your cues on how to do that from anywhere you can, and if the only cues you have are from porn, then those are the ones you will take.” Today it’s not uncommon for two people to be in a sexual relationship, neither of them particularly enjoying what’s going on, but both believing that this is the way they should be having sex. Due to our over-exposure to porn, even open-minded, sexually aware people are struggling to figure out what genuinely turns them on. The lines are becoming blurred between what we want, and what we think we should want. This sense of inauthentic pleasure is, more than anything else, very depressing. “Sex is the area of human experience that embraces that vastest possible range of proclivities,” says Gallop. Everybody has different sexual desires, fantasies, wants and needs, which is what makes sex such a beautiful way to express yourself. In the end, Gallop’s message is actually pretty simple: talk about it. The way forward is sexual honesty. — With files from Veronika Khvorostukhina
Shisha: a smoking hot new trend
How this flavoured tobacco can be more dangerous than cigarettes Madelon Kirov Contributor “Hey, do you want to go smoke shisha tonight?” is a phrase that’s becoming increasingly familiar among students and young adults. Going to the hookah lounge to smoke the flavourful shisha is becoming quite the popular social activity today. In Montreal, these lounges can be found all around StDenis and St-Laurent and are occupied by patrons of various demographics. Flavoured tobacco, known as shisha, is smoked from a pipe connected to a device called a hookah. Shisha is known for its countless flavours: strawberry, watermelon, grape, peach, pear. Name any fruit and you can be guaranteed a hookah in that flavour. The hookah operates when heat from burning charcoal vaporizes the tobacco, thus producing smoke. The smoker then inhales it through a long tube and takes in the faint taste of their favourite flavour. Is shisha harmful? Many people don’t seem to realize that it is. In fact, it can be more harmful than smoking cigarettes. During an hour-long shisha smoking session, the smoker will inhale 100 to 200 times the amount of smoke than that of one cigarette. Shisha and cigarettes are both composed of tobacco, but shisha is smoked longer and in larger amounts. A common effect of this drug is temporary lightheadedness, often followed by a feeling of relaxation or fatigue. With more exposure,
the smoker will get used to the dizziness and eventually stop feeling the effects. “After a while of smoking [shisha], my throat always hurts,” says Laura-Rose Kennedy, a Concordia political science student. “I also find that there is a fine line between lightheadedness and headaches.” Laura goes to hookah lounges about once every few months, as a social outing. “Smoke rings, however, are entertaining,” she adds with a chuckle. The long-term effects of shisha can be extremely dangerous. Excessive smoking can lead to lung cancer due to the toxic substances in the smoke. These substances can also cause clogged arteries and heart disease. Pregnant women risk birth defects and a lower birth weight for the child. And of course, there is the risk of nicotine addiction and the exposure to second-hand smoke. Taking into consideration that hookahs are usually shared by two or more people, the risk of spreading diseases and illnesses shoots sky high. Bernard Mahaise, a dentist from the Caledon Dental Care Clinic in Bolton, Ont., talks about the effects that smoking shisha has on oral health. “The short-term effects are the staining of teeth. Tobacco smoke contains countless toxins, so it’s the toxins that cause the damage. You’ll start with gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) which will lead to periodontitis (inflammation of the bone).” Mahaise explains that once periodontitis has settled on the bone, it will weaken and ultimately result
in tooth loss. “Changes in the oral mucosa due to toxins can lead to cancer,” he adds. So why do students smoke shisha? For many, it is part of their culture. The hookah is believed to have originated from India and the Middle Eastern regions where it was used as a method of healing. The hazards of tobacco were later discovered but it still remains a huge cultural part of countries like Syria, Iran, Pakistan, India, Philippines and South Africa. “I’m Middle Eastern, [smoking shisha] is almost like the Lebanese way of going for coffee,” says Maxim Korah, a Concordia mechanical engineering student. When asked if the risk of lung cancer worries him, Korah replies, “Not any more than beer is bad for my liver, like most things, you just have to be smart about how you use it.” Why are young people suddenly starting to smoke more shisha? “Because it has a more accessible flavour, it’s probably similar to teenagers starting to drink alcohol with coolers,” says William Turcot, a software engineering student from ETS Montreal. Turcot explains that he finds smoking is a pleasant and relaxing activity. However, he also takes caution. “Since I do a lot of cardio I’m afraid it might negatively affect it.” Smoking shisha is a social, cultural and enjoyable activity for many. But like with every substance, it is crucial to be well informed about the risks you are taking when you decide to participate in such activities.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Plateau restaurant serves Tex-Mex with a twist Get your hands dirty at Icehouse Stephanie Laleggia Contributor
A little while ago, one of my friends told me about this new Tex-Mex restaurant in the Plateau called Icehouse. She gave me a vague description of the menu, blurting out words like “fried oysters” and “lobster burrito,” all the while drooling over the thought of heading back there twice in one week. She had me at “fried oysters.” I immediately ditched my previous plans and tagged along for the culinary ride. Although I was annoyed that I had to wait because of their “no reservation” rule, I admit my grumpiness rooted from a grumbling stomach. Once I settled my stomach with a few homemade Old Bay spice potato chips, I was able to concentrate and observe my surroundings. While Icehouse may not be the fanciest restaurant, it’s charming, quaint, unpretentious and just plain cool. The room doesn’t fit more than 25 seats, unless you add on the extra ones on the terrace. The wooden panels and open concept makes me feel like I’m vacationing on a boardwalk. There’s also an open kitchenette, a small detail I’ve always appreciated—I love watching chefs at work. Though the service is not always reliable, you’re more than welcome to give your order at the kitchen counter, which is right beside the display of homemade chips and a steel tub of oysters. The menu is handwritten on a chalkboard above the counter (did you honestly expect anything else?) There are no utensils, so don’t feel bad using your hands; that’s what they want. As for the clean and polite diners among us, do not fret, there are rolls of brown paper towels at your disposal. The food is served on small red plastic trays and white and red checkered wax paper—very country chic. Before I go on to the food, I just want to express my excitement when I saw Micheladas on the menu. It’s a Mexican beer concoction with lime, Worcestershire, Maggi and Icehouse’s homemade
ONE BITE OF THE LOBSTER BURRITO BRINGS AN EXPLOSION OF FLAVOURS IN YOUR MOUTH. PHOTO BY NAVNEET PALL
Tabasco sauce. If it’s not your cup of beer, don’t worry, Icehouse has a delicious spiked lemonade (I would propose the bourbon over the vodka). To ensure you try more than one plate, I suggest visiting with a friend with a common palate. With a menu so detailed and enticing, it’s hard to pick and choose which dish you want to taste. One of my personal favourites is the popcorn shrimp. They’re crunchy, savoury and not too oily. They’re coated with a sweet and spicy sauce made with honey, more homemade Tabasco and red wine—a little bundle of delight. The frito pie is quite interesting. I had read the chef wasn’t satisfied with the selection of fritos here, so he decided to make his own. If this is what a frito should taste like, I don’t know what I was eating before. The chips were covered with
a layer of cheese, chili and a side of mustard. The combination is brilliant and it makes me wonder why I’ve never thought of it before now. Moving on to the main dishes, for you lobster lovers, the lobster burrito is a must. Though it’s one of the most expensive dishes on the menu, it’s totally worth it. In the midst of all the chili, black beans, cheese, homemade potato chips and corn niblets is a big meaty lobster claw. It’s one of the most popular items on the menu and for good reason. The combination between the sweet, salty, spicy, soft and crunchy is transcendent. I now have a hard time ordering lobster rolls knowing full well there’s a lobster burrito out there. As for the meat lovers, I would suggest the brisket sandwich. It’s a hamburger bun topped with tender steak, grilled onions, poblano chilies
and a cheese sauce. If you’re feeling safe, then go with the fried chicken tacos dressed with Monterey Jack cheese, jalapenos and coleslaw—simple and tasty. Though it may be hard to choose which dish is the best, there is only one I dream about— the fried oyster po’boy. It is one of my absolute favourite things to eat. The oysters are perfectly crisp and topped with fresh coleslaw in a milk bread bun. Their homemade chipotle mayo is really what holds the whole po’boy together. It may sound simple, but the flavours are like nothing you’ve ever had before. To sum it all up—it’s about time Montreal has Icehouse. Icehouse is located at 51 Roy St. E.
Barraca Rhumerie & Tapas: Montreal’s unique happy medium A little bit of rum with some Latin flavour Christine Beaton Contributor Ernest Hemingway once wrote that a clean, well-lit café was better than any bar. To me, that sounds like a challenge. Sure, cafés are cozy and cute; they serve tiny food on tiny plates and you can have a conversation with someone without screaming over a bass-heavy beat. But bars are more electrifying; you can drink anything your heart desires and dancing is more or less warranted the drunker you get. Well, ladies and gentlemen, I think I have found Montreal’s happy medium. Barraca Rhumerie & Tapas is a mix of cozy café and lively pub. The wood accents, wroughtiron chandeliers and low lighting make for the inviting café atmosphere, but the bar’s impressive selection of rums make for the perfect bar experience. It is home to over 55 kinds of rum from places all over the world including Brazil, Jamaica, Venezuela and of course, Cuba. They serve everything from Captain Morgan to 21-year-old Flor de Caña. It is available by the glass, as a shooter, or in one of their amazing tropicalflavoured cocktails. Along with plenty of rum, they also serve local and imported beer and
have an extensive Spanish wine list. The prices of the drinks are reasonable when compared with other bars in the area, if maybe a bit on the steep side. Prices depend on the rum; how old it is and how much the bar paid to have it on hand, but a glass generally costs around $6. The food is definitely the next high point of this unique rum bar. Chef Guillermo Lopez created a long list of tapas, which are tiny Spanish-inspired appetizers, as well as one-serving casseroles and plates of mixed meat and vegetables. Their most interesting and flavourful appetizer, grilled almonds with both sugar and spice, is a Latin take on the traditional peanuts found at most pubs. Their tapas are $3 each, which seems like a reasonable price, but keep in mind that you will only be getting one appetizer-sized bite of food. They are, however, kind of worth it. The tiny bites packed a huge punch, and never ceased to amaze me. If you are looking for something more sustaining, their casseroles are the way to go. Everything from breakfaststyle egg and mushroom, to bar-style french fry and spicy ketchup casseroles make the bar even more unique than it already is. To make it even more enticing, if a lady orders one of these specialty casseroles on game night, it comes with a free cocktail. If that doesn’t have you running
Photo by Navneet Pall
over there, I don’t know what will. Barraca has a live DJ every night, playing everything from Latin-inspired to Top 40. It makes for a diverse experience and I even felt the need to Shazam a couple of the songs for later reference. It wasn’t too loud or annoying, which is welcomed in a time when conversation is stifled by the booming music played in most bars.
The patrons pick up the pace after 10 p.m. and start flooding into the bar, but it’s barely noticeable. Everyone in the bar is mellow and nonchalant, including the waitresses and bartenders. There is a bit of a wait service-wise, but you will always be served with a smile. And a glass of rum, of course. Barraca is located at 1134 Mont-Royal Ave. E.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Write to the editor: email@example.com ART MATTERS
Art Matters all over Montreal
The 12th edition of Concordia’s art fest promises to be bigger than ever Elysha Del Giusto-Enos Staff writer
fter 12 years of growth, Concordia’s Art Matters festival has broken out of the hallways, past the downtown campus, and into galleries all over the city. Over 120 Montreal-based artists are going to be showing off their pieces during the two-week festival that kicks off this Friday. The festival has now expanded to various boroughs and one of the first things the Art Matters team did for this year’s edition was secure venues. This led to the festival spreading out over St-Henri, downtown, the Plateau and the Mile End. “We have an apartment gallery, and one show is happening in the back of a truck,” mentioned the festival’s outreach coordinator, Vivien Leung. Not much is known about this event, called Vehicular Commodities, other than that the truck will appear, and that wine and cheese will be served when it does. Leung explained that artists “sometimes want to be a bit more down-low about [their project,] which is part of the whole feel of what they’re trying to create, so that’s why sometimes there’s less information.” For the first time, Art Matters will have an open house weekend starting Friday, March 9. There will be events and artist talks all over the city. Leung said the idea for the open house is to encourage people to see multiple shows in one day. “Each show on top of the open house will have their own vernissage,” Leung added.
Another first for this year is a speaker series called Art of Survival, happening on Sunday, March 4. It will feature artists from different backgrounds talking about how to make it in the ever-changing art industry. During its two-week run, the festival will feature a variety of exhibits, such as My Pregnant Pre-Teen Birthday Vacation with Dad (curated by Nafisa Kaptownwala), a show about transitioning from one age group to another and how time can change our view of past experiences. Kaptownwala described her show as “art being able to encompass a moment visually.” She also said “I want the audience to feel like they’re walking into someone’s space, like they’re understanding their life [...] but
also just for people to relate.” In another exhibit, an artist has contributed portraits of all the men she’s had relationships with in the past year—drawn in lipstick. It makes the show not only about memories, but according to Leung, “very tongue-in-cheek.” A show called Three Times (3 X 7 X 52 X y), curated by Zoë Wonfor, will have free food every night. “[Wonfor] really wants to create this warm, almost dinner-table atmosphere,” Leung said, Wonfor, who spent 18 hours looking through artwork before deciding what she wanted to include in Three Times, said, “I feel extremely fortunate to have selected the artists I have and couldn’t be happier with the
ultimate direction of my show. [...] I want people to come hungry, and to leave satiated.” On March 11, in the Mile End, curator Aditi Ohri will take people through a series of artists talks and neighbourhood tours in the exhibition walking tour, Art Crawl. Ohri will take people through public and retail spaces in the area—such as vintage shops, cafés and bookstores. The Art Matters festival seeks to give students the kind of real-world experience that they won’t get in a classroom—and it’s more than just fine arts students who have benefited. “We’ll sometimes call out, for instance, to the creative writing program which is part of Arts and Science. And one of our executives this year is a JMSB student. We’re not just fine arts,” said Leung. Art Matters will kick everything off with an opening party at The Darling Foundry (745 Ottawa St.) on Friday, March 2. It’s open to everyone and will feature local bands, art installations and dancing under the glow of video projections. Art Matters runs from March 2 to 16. Exhibitions are free. Opening night party is $6 in advance, and $10 at the door. For more information, visit artmattersfestival.org or @ArtMattersFest on Twitter.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Bombs, bulldozers and olive trees
Two docs explore violence and resistance in Gaza and the West Bank Brandon Judd Staff writer
hile the myriad causes being fought for around the world may polarize, there seems to be a wider consensus on methods of resistance. The vanguard of defensible strategies has—and continues to be—nonviolent resistance. It’s almost a knee-jerk reaction to invoke Gandhi when critics argue against violent resistance. While there was a trend in recent years towards accepting that violence is sometimes the only option, the Arab Spring has vaulted nonviolence back into the global zeitgeist, despite Libya having paid for their freedom—and it wasn’t cheap—in blood. Nonviolent resistance has rarely been a significant force in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, where reciprocal vengeance has long since made both sides blind. In an Israeli-Palestinianfocused two-film week at Cinema Politica, it’s clear just how much reason those living in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank have for violence against Israel, but also how effective nonviolence has the potential to be.
Tears of Gaza will be screened Monday, March 5 at 7 p.m. and Budrus will be screened Friday, March 9 at 7 p.m. in Concordia’s Hall building auditorium, H-110. For more information, go to cinemapolitica.org/ concordia. TEARS OF GAZA
his Norwegian-produced film focuses on three children living in Gaza during Israel’s 2008 offensive in the region. The so-called “Gaza War,” a misleading moniker that supposes what occurred before or after the month-long operation wasn’t war, has been condemned by the United Nations for war crimes on both sides. The UN’s Goldstone Report accuses Israel of a policy that targets civilians, a charge its author later distances himself from but which is not evidently refuted, according to his cosignatories. What’s clear in the first scene of the movie is these are children in body only. When asked their dreams for the future, two tell the camera they want to be a doctor and a lawyer—to treat those hurt by the Israelis and prosecute the Israelis for doing so, respectively. The third is much more profound. Looking solemnly at the ground, with a weary stance, she says quietly, “Life is really hard. Really.” There are happy moments in these kids’ lives, and we’re privy to them early in the film. But it’s not long before this bubble is burst. A siren, like that of an accelerated police cruiser’s, rings out in a bustling market. Moments later, the scene is brutally
BUDRUS truncated by the arrival of death after blares of the sound of a fighter jet. Two-tone smoke engulfs the sky; some run away from the smoke, others towards it. Apartment walls are strewn across the wide streets. Hundreds of men hurriedly move debris as children are lifted from the ruin. The crowd moans in unison as a broken man might after hours of torture. The next day a woman in black moves among the wreckage, reciting prayers; a young boy follows, walking with a cane. The footage of Israeli attacks is phenomenal. What’s most affecting is not the explosions, but the few moments of missiles discharging from jets and helicopters. This elucidates the ease of inflicting utter destruction and the impossibility of preparing it. In Tears of Gaza, the camera operates as witness and scribe. Little else is shown but life in the Gaza Strip, where bullets wrack houses and children die soldiers’ deaths. Almost no treatment is given to Hamas, nor is the effect of Palestinian attacks on Israel discussed. The conditions of life in Gaza are clear, and it’s hard to imagine a concerted effort towards peaceful resistance under them. But, as the next film shows, this is exactly what has been done elsewhere in Palestine.
udrus is a small town near Ramallah, right at the edge of the West Bank’s border with Israel. When the Israeli government decides to build its own Great Wall, the Israeli West Bank barrier, to encircle areas of Palestine from which they argue suicide bombers were originating, Budrus stands to lose its farmland. Fifty olive trees, to which the town had been tending for centuries, are to be uprooted and disposed of in the construction. These trees provide the locus for resistance from the town of 1,900 people. The resistance in Budrus follows the same blueprint used in Egypt, though on a much smaller scale and with concerted leadership. What we see is a war of attrition between the Israeli Defense Force and the protesters: sporadic beatings aside, the IDF is handcuffed by the presence of foreign nationals, Israeli citizens and women in the front line. Laced with scenes of resistance are those with the movement’s leader, Ayed Morrar, whose nonviolent citizens’ coalition also aims to include both Hamas and Fatah. His family life is peaceful and forgettable; both qualities make easy to identify with while
highlighting his improbability as a resistance leader. Two IDF officials also make appearances in Budrus, lending it an evenhanded feel that Tears of Gaza lacks, though the latter’s observational tone makes the one-sidedness less worrisome. One soldier, Doron Spielman, is a spokesman for the army. His perfect English, with its touch of New York inflection, and spewing of officialese are expected. But it’s Yasmine Levy, an IDF squad commander, who lends the Israeli side a conscience. She develops an intriguing relationship with the women in the resistance. Her recollection of the events is best summed up as follows: “As combatants, we didn’t know all the implications and problems. We were like robots. They told us ‘Move the people.’ So we did.” It’s a good example of the issues with demonizing specific soldiers, in the IDF or any army, for their indoctrinated obedience. The obedience itself, however, is terrifying. While the olive trees are lost, the resistance is a success, and Israel’s reaction to it is hopeful in its cooperative tone. But the question remains whether anyone could have the strength for this type of resistance were they undergoing the trauma of Gaza. My guess is no.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian
It s a beautiful world
Montreal-based artist Damian Siqueiros redefines beauty through his work Giselle MacDonald Contributor The city is subtly splattered with his delectable images promoting Les Grands Ballets de Montréal. Metro stations and billboards throughout the city are adorned with the product of his vision and search for beauty. His photographs are deep, sensuous images full of movement, flow and sentiment. They succeed in proving that beauty is all around us, even where we least expect it. Beauty is an aging man or woman. Beauty is a straight, gay or transsexual person. Beauty is respect and understanding towards difference. Beauty is drama and a story as it unfolds. Beauty is transforming negativity into positivity. Beauty, for Damian Siqueiros, is omnipresent. “When you treat beauty not as commercial beauty, as what a top model would look like, but beauty in the sense of having a positive view on things and transforming negativity into happiness; for me, that’s beauty,” said Siqueiros. “And finding that beauty in people or in places […] that’s what moves my work.” With both art and photography as part of his education, Siqueiros doesn’t consider himself merely a photographer, but a blend of a photog-
rapher and painter—a photopainter, as he calls it. Painting is an essential part of his process; he pays close attention to makeup, set designs, lighting and retouching. He compares his work with that of a Renaissance painter, applying several transparencies and layers to his photographs, almost like brushstrokes. The final product is a photographic image with the aesthetic of a painting. “I would say that even though I have both, as a photographer and as an artist, the aesthetic is always a very clear view of where I wanted to be as an artist,” said Siqueiros. “It’s strange because I think that’s one of the hardest things as an artist: to find your own voice.” Siqueiros comes from a close, science-driven family from Baja California, Mexico. In 2009, he moved to Montreal with the hopes of starting a new life in a city where topics such as gender equality and gender diversity were being discussed regularly. In fact, these are two things Siqueiros speaks about a lot; one of his goals is to motivate people to be respectful and understanding with other people and with other people’s differences. “Gender diversity is an intrinsic part of the identity of every person,” said Siqueiros with a
thick but charming Spanish accent. “But it’s not the person. There can be good or bad people that are straight or gay or transsexual and it really doesn’t matter that much.” Siqueiros, who specializes in artistic and editorial photography, is fascinated with movement. It’s no mystery why his favourite subject to photograph are dancers. He says movement inspires him because of the drama; not drama in the sense that something negative is happening, but that something is happening. He seeks to tell the story behind a person as it develops through his work, and for him, movement and emotion are the perfect combination to do that. He tries to portray emotions that make people feel alive and connected to his work, even if they may be sad ones. He compares the feeling to the aftertaste of listening to an Adele song— although it is sad, it doesn’t make you feel bad, it makes you feel good and alive. His latest series, part of this year’s Art Souterrain, is called The Journey of Flowers. Siqueiros draws a parallel between the life of a flower and the career of a dancer, both significantly short. He aims to connect with his public on an emotional level rather than an intellectual one, something he thinks contemporary art has for-
gotten how to do. In the series, Siqueiros also exposes the limits people feel they have when they age or if they suffer from a chronic illness. He wants people to overcome the preconception that being old or ill means not being able to be active or fulfilled and not being able to contribute to society. He photographed renowned Quebec dancer and choreographer Margie Gillis, and Bobby Thompson, Montreal’s well-known Argentinian tango dancer, both in their fifties and still very active and popular, in order to exemplify how he would like people to see life when they hit that age. ”If tomorrow I can’t walk as fast as I used to do, then it means that I have more time to look at my environment and the place where I live and contemplate more,” said Siqueiros. “I want people to take this seemingly bad thing as an opportunity to become better people.” Art Souterrain runs until March 11. Siqueiros’ work will be exhibited at Square Victoria metro station. For more information on Art Souterrain, visit www.artsouterrain.com. For more information about Damian Siqueiros, visit www.damiansiqueiros.com.
Looks like rhino season has begun Liberal Arts Theatre Society takes on Ionesco’s Rhinoceros Max Blatherwick Contributor Concordia’s Liberal Arts Theatre Society is putting on two productions this year taken from the theatre of the absurd, one from Samuel Beckett and one from Eugène Ionesco. Play, written by Beckett in 1963, is a short one act show in which the three characters—a man and two women—are encased in funeral urns, with only their heads showing. One woman is the man’s wife and the other is his mistress and the plot centres on their obsession over the man’s
affair. However, the theatre society’s main attraction is Ionesco’s 1959 creation, Rhinoceros. The play deals with the inhabitants of a small French town who, for unknown reasons, begin turning into rhinoceroses. Berenger, the play’s protagonist played by the alluring Steve Cutler, is the only one who seems to not be afflicted by this strange epidemic. The themes in Rhinoceros revolve around the shift from a quaint society to a new fascist, industrialized world. The design of the play draws heavily from the Dadaist manifesto, which arrived during the First World War and ridiculed the modern world as meaningless. The propaganda generated by the war led people to question their own systems of morality and search for meaning in a world where the written word was not legitimized. In both Ionesco’s and Beckett’s plays, words
become distorted, ignored and are used to rationalize philosophical concepts which are completely irrational. This is the bizarre disorder in which the characters in Rhinoceros find themselves, and where the structure of the fascist regime offers a kind of simplicity in the characters’ quest for solace. The play will feature visuals that amplify the chaos of this conventional society being overwhelmed by fascist values. Surrealist imagery will give way to a futurist art aesthetic, representing the power of the machine and the rapidly progressing industrial society. The sudden rhinoceros uprising reveals the ugliness of what has transpired. Anthony Kennedy, the artistic director of the production, feels the play has benefited from its chosen venue. “Rather than performing our plays in a traditional theatre, we had our direction and design influenced from the ground up by the
space we were working in,” he said. “Our brilliant designer Danielle Fagen chose Les Ateliers JeanBrillant for its beautiful industrial aesthetic and rich history.” This former rail warehouse has been re-appropriated into a gallery, an artist workshop and now a performance setting. “It’s been a great pleasure doing our own little part in the revitalization of this beautiful space,” said Kennedy. The production will also be accompanied by an exhibition of art influenced by the plays. There will be 18 artists featured and the show is being curated by Katrina Caruso. Rhinoceros and Play run from March 1 to 4 at Les Ateliers Jean-Brillant (3520 St-Jacques). Doors open at 7 p.m. for the exhibit; curtain at 8 p.m. Check out the Facebook event at http:// on.fb.me/AvCmzq.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Ready to take a trip? Let Matthew Forsythe’s Jinchalo take you on a wordless nonsensical adventure Amanda L. Shore Assistant arts editor
How do we illustrate? Let me count the ways: with our bodies, with our hands, with a brush or with a pen. Before language and the written word, there was illustration. We told stories with our bodies and with images drawn on cave walls. Today, we continue to use the technique of illustration when words fail us, but would you read a story without any words? Before you make a decision, you may want to consider picking up Matthew Forsythe’s Jinchalo. Based on Korean folktales about parental loyalty, this 120-page paperback is made entirely of wordless drawings that tell the story of a little Korean girl, the gluttonous Voguchi, and her adventure with a shape-shifter. After eating all the food in her father’s house, she’s sent to the market to buy more. In the market, Voguchi buys a large egg, and as she’s leaving she collides with Jinchalo, who is holding the shape-shifter egg. In the resulting chaos, the eggs get switched and Voguchi walks off with the shape-shifter egg. On her way home, the egg hatches and adventure ensues as she chases the shape-shifter through a tumult of nonsensical and fantastical worlds. It may seem daunting to read a story completely in pictures, without any words to guide you. However, Forsythe draws crisp, animated images that perfectly illustrate the characters’ emotions and actions. The sequence of events and the exact nature of the plot are less concrete and hinge on the reader’s ability to interpret and formulate the narrative based on the illustrations. As a result, it’s possible that every reader will be reading a different story, one that is perhaps entirely different from Forsythe’s conception. Forsythe, however, doesn’t see this as a disadvantage, but the opposite. “The great thing about nonsense and surreal works is that they leave you space to interpret things however you want and it isn’t patronizing to the reader or the
audience,” he said. “The audience participates in it.” Forsythe has worn many career hats in his day and interestingly enough, being an artist wasn’t originally one of them. He studied political science with a minor in religious studies at McMaster University. He’s been a part-time professor at Concordia’s department of journalism and he’s taught English as a second language. However, unlike many children who draw as a pastime and then stop, Forsythe has been drawing since he was a child and has continued to do so despite the different paths he’s explored. While teaching English in Korea, he was inspired by the graphics, cartoon culture and comics of the country to draw his own comics based on the nonsense logic and aesthetic style of Korean comics. “It was really fresh to me. There’s a sort of nonsense logic in a certain strain of manga, just sort of surreal comics for kids. I was teaching kids and I noticed that they weren’t afraid of nonsense, because it’s so much fun and it’s a different way of looking at the world, so that really inspired me. I was drawing with my kids in class and we would tell each other stories and make up stories, so it came out of this experience,” said Forsythe. The title Jinchalo means “really” in Korean. Forsythe explained that oftentimes he would be in a conversation, speaking in Korean, but he
wouldn’t quite understand what was going on, so to appear as if he did know, he would ask, “Jinchalo?” and his conversation partner would reply, “Yeah, Jinchalo.” This can be paralleled to how some readers might react to this book, not quite understanding everything, but sort of nodding along as if they did. Jinchalo is also a character in the book. He is the mysterious fate figure that sets the plot in motion, but by the end of the story we are still left with the question of who he is. Voguchi is funny and lovable; her personal-
ity jumps off the page. Other characters, such as the furry rectangular monster that comes begging for food, are harder to interpret, but this oddity simply adds to the nonsensical fun. Jinchalo is a delight both artistically and narrative-wise. Spend an hour with this book and you’ll feel like a little kid again—free, playful and joyous. Jinchalo is available from Drawn and Quarterly and other fine book retailers. For more information, visit comingupforair.net.
In the Spirit of Giving Back , we are seeking nominations for
The Concordia Council on Student Life Outstanding Contribution Awards
Is your professor available to help you outside the classroom, to support your projects, listen to your problems and try to help? Is there a staff member who has taken the time to go above and beyond their job to assist students with special projects or needs? Has one of your fellow students shown initiative on campus to develop new projects, help out and make life better for students? Does one of your friends volunteer in the community helping those less fortunate or working to address social ills? Now is your chance to show how much you appreciate students, faculty and staff for being special and giving back by nominating them! Guidelines and applications available online at: http://deanofstudents.concordia.ca/services/ccsl.shtml
Deadline for application: Thursday, March 1, 2012 at 5pm
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian
The devil takes on Montreal Title 66 Productions aims to shock with provocative play Stephanie Mercier Voyer Contributor “I’m sorry I made you wait,” whispers Logan Williams, dressed in a medieval puffy-sleeved shirt and paint-stained blue jeans when I meet him by the elevator. “Walk past the curtains and sit at the back.” Title 66 Productions theatre troupe, which Williams founded, are in the middle of rehearsal for their upcoming play, Clive Barker’s The History of the Devil, opening on Feb. 29 at Théâtre Rouge. Williams also just finished working on the Black Theatre Workshop’s New Canadian Kid as a set designer assistant. Williams’ outgoing demeanour makes it easy to instantly like him. He might look innocent with his strawberry blonde hair and bright eyes, but he could outsmart most people with his extensive literary knowledge. The young actor grew up on a farm in Howick, Quebec’s third smallest municipality. Williams’ parents preferred that he did not have too many toys as a child, which pushed him to be creative and innovative with the little he had. This is something he integrated into Title 66 Productions, which he founded after graduating from Dawson College’s professional theatre program last spring. “We made this mandate which was of acting at its purest base and working on innovative design concepts,” says Williams. “We wanted to take a path of art that was different, outside the box of what everyone was doing.” With his choice to produce The History of the
Devil, Williams promotes a different approach to theatre, one that forces audiences to adopt a critical eye towards the society they live in. The play is bound to be controversial with its depiction of the devil going on trial to be granted access to heaven. The History of the Devil tackles issues such as sex, religion, violence and death. “It makes people uncomfortable because that is what is around us,” says Williams.
Williams finally appears on stage during rehearsal. He is wearing a robe and his face is covered by a red, glittery mask. Williams is Jesus Christ, this distorted, over-the-top version of the messiah, begging the devil to kill him in some sort of grandiose way in order for him to be remembered by everyone for eternity. The young Dawson graduate admits that it is not just the content of the play that could offend spectators, but its design could also make
people uneasy. “We are aiming for a design aesthetic that is not typical, but more simple and creative,” says Williams. The set is composed of a dozen immaculate white mannequins, torsos and cubes, which are moved across the stage to represent different locations. Title 66‘s take on The History of The Devil is not just a play; it is performance art mixed with theatre, which is precisely what could make the audience uncomfortable. “We are telling the story,” reassures Williams. “We are just telling it in a heightened way so that people are more intrigued.” Williams may be fresh out of CEGEP, but he is wise beyond his years. He hopes to see the Montreal theatre industry evolve, and reach new levels of creativity. “We don’t bang rocks together to make fire anymore, we buy lighters,” he says. “It is what theatre has to do too; it can’t just be Shakespeare in a corset [...]” While the big theatre companies in Montreal are trying to attract the masses, Williams aims to reach out to a younger audience. He says it is important for the youth to explore art in all its forms, whether it be theatre, visual art or music. Title 66’s interpretation of Barker’s play wants to show people that a play is not just a play; it is a show and an experience that will make audiences reflect on themselves. “People will be shocked. People will be angry. People will be pleased,” says Williams about the upcoming play. “It all depends on what kind of mindset you’re coming in with and I suggest that you come in with a very open mind.” The History of the Devil runs from Feb. 29 to March 4 at Théâtre Rouge (4750 Henri-Julien Ave.) Tickets are $15. For more information, go to www.facebook.com/title66.
Take your cinema with a little soy this weekend Sample some AsianCanadian cinema at the AmerAsia Film Festival Anouare Abdou Contributor The third edition of the AmerAsia Film Festival, celebrating the latest in Asian cinema, will be taking place during the first two weeks of March. The festival showcases cinema that audiences would usually be unable to see, promoting the work of independent filmmakers of Asian-Canadian heritage as well as Asian-inspired films. The festival has five film categories, AmerAsia Shorts, Asian Treasures, Québécois Special, Spotlight on Animation and We Distribute, a selection of films from Canadian cinema companies that distribute Asian films. There are 35 films playing at four different venues around Montreal. Asian Treasures will feature Hirokazu Kore-eda’s I Wish and Kim Ki-duk’s Arirang. I Wish tells the story of two brothers living separately as a result of their parents’ divorce. Koichi, the eldest, is living with his mother, while Ryunosuke lives with his father. When Koichi hears a rumour that when two trains cross each other on the newest line of Japan’s bullet train system a wish will come true, he hatches a plan to be on one of the trains to wish for the reunion of his family. The pace is very slow but the slower
rhythm gives a realistic feel to the story. The focus is not on some climatic moment, but on the children’s journey and that allows for the full appreciation of the movie. The acting is plausible, so it is not surprising to find out that the two brothers in the movie are brothers in real life. Ryunosuke’s contagious laugh to Koichi’s sober and serious look make them both compatible characters. Although I Wish is a drama, it is punctuated by laugh-outloud comic moments and is a heart-warming movie with a positive message. Arirang won the A Certain Glance award at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival and is Ki-duk’s sixteenth movie. A cross between a documentary and a video journal, in the style of a drama, it documents the filmmaker’s life in exile after a traumatic incident on his set almost cost an actress her life. The movie is shot with a digital camera and Ki-duk is the sole character. Ki-duk pours his heart out to the camera in such a vulnerable manner it is almost uncomfortable to observe. He sings the folk song after which the the movie is titled, and screams and cries without any censorship. “I need to
film something to be happy, so I’m filming myself,” he said. In one poignant scene, one of his selves is interrogating the other and is giving him the hard truth. Then later on, we watch him watch this scene. Despite the minimalistic equipment, the film still manages to demonstrate great cinematography. On top of showing a variety of films, AmerAsia will be hosting the Smartphone Film Festival. The competition solicits amateurs and professionals alike to submit a short film, shot entirely with a smartphone,
on a theme to be announced March 1. Competitors will have 72 hours after the theme is announced to film, edit and upload their videos to the Ciné-Asie platform. Fifteen submissions will be chosen for a screening March 9 and of those screened, prizes will be awarded to the top three. The AmerAsia Film Festival takes place March 1 to 4 and March 9 to 11. For more information, check out www.amerasiafestival.com.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Write to the editor: firstname.lastname@example.org
World music review: Africa There is a lot of amazing music to be discovered from the largest continent on the planet (and we’re not just talking about “Hakuna Matata” and “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”)
Allie Mason and Elizabeth Mackay Music and assistant music editors
(Mali): After being referred to as “the future of Tuareg music,” Tamikrest has a lot to live up to. But after listening to their psychedelic, desert-inspired synthesis of Tuareg, rock ‘n’ roll, electric blues and pop, you’ll understand why. Singing entirely in Tamashek, the language of the Tuareg people, they use traditional sounds such as youyous, djembés, as well as electric guitar, bass, drums and vocals to bring you on your own personal hallucinogenic desert oasis trip. The nine band members, all in their early ‘20s, received musical training at a small desert oasis school, but didn’t move beyond playing traditional songs until the Internet became available and they were able to discover iconic Western musical heroes Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd and Bob Marley. Although you might not associate their sound with a heavy message, the Tuareg people have endured great suffering, including a five-year-long civil war in the early ‘90s which shaped the music and philosophies of these young musicians. MOST RECENT ALBUM: Toumastin (Glitterhouse Records; 2011)
(Burkina Faso): In a wild cohesion of electronic and African sounds, Burkina Electric pulls out all the right stops to have you moving and grooving. The group is actually led by Lukas Ligeti, an extremely talented, Austrian-born drummer and composer who happens to be the son of the famous film and classical composer Gyorgy Ligeti. Burkina Electric is more than just a band—think The Mighty Mighty Bosstones—they also have two dancers, tying together the long-held tradition of music and dance for the African people. By seeking out rare and unknown African rhythms, this sextet is spearheading electronic world music with ancient rhythms and instruments, such as those of the Sahel, combined with their own original beats and sounds. Lead singer Maï Lingani sings in four languages, including French, and alongside guitarist Wende K. Blass, electronicist/VJ Pyrolator, Ligeti, and dancers/choreographers Vicky and Zoko Zoko, this Burkina Faso band is sure to impress. MOST RECENT ALBUM: Raem Tekra (Listenable Records; 2007) UPCOMING ALBUM: Not yet named, no official release date.
D’BANJ (Nigeria): In a world where rap and hip hop is dominated by glock-happy, gold-toothed, ganja-bragging criminals, D’Banj’s harmonica is a full breath of fresh air. After signing with Kanye’s label, G.O.O.D. MUSIC, in 2011, the Nigerian native will bring a slightly less hard face to American R&B. D’Banj was born into a conservative family and was expected to follow his father’s footsteps into the military, but he found himself drawn to drums rather than guns. In tribute to his deceased brother and the harmonica instruction he received from him, D’Banj continues to stick with the instrument, playing it on stage and in studio. His reggae-Afrobeat tales of chasing kokelets (beautiful women) and struggling for acceptance bring youthful humour to hip hop. MOST RECENT ALBUM: The Entertainer (Mo Hits Records; 2008) UPCOMING ALBUM: Mr. Endowed (G.O.O.D. Music; 2012)
KING SUNNY ADÉ (Nigeria): At 65 years of age, King Sunny Adé is still pumping out the high energy traditional African rhythms that most people would associate with the widely diverse continent. He and his band, the African Beats, deliver Yoruba Nigerian Jùjú music and are widely considered to have popularized the genre in the world music scene. To say he’s accomplished is an understatement—he’s been nominated for two Grammys, collaborated with Stevie Wonder, released well over 100 albums, and he has even graced the silver screen three times. And don’t think that you’ll have to miss out on a wild performance when it comes to this veteran performer. With anywhere from 23 to 50 band members on stage at any given time, a concert by Adé is probably a bigger party than anything you might have seen during frosh week. MOST RECENT ALBUM: Morning Joy (Master Disc; 2010)
LADYSMITH BLACK MAMBAZO (South Africa): Arguably one of the most prolific South African DIE ANTWOORD (South Africa): If Nicki Minaj’s latest schizophrenic Grammy awards show offering has left a stale Lady Gaga-esque taste in your mouth, turn to Die Antwoord for an even filthier take on grunge hip hop. Die Antwoord, “The Answer” in Afrikaans, is weeding Zef style into mainstream rave electronica with the help of the Pitchfork and Coachella obsessed. Its three members, Ninja, Yo-Landi Vi$$er, and DJ Hi -Tek are at the forefront of the South African Zef movement, and boast the dirt-poor yet flashy lifestyle. They fuse fashion with music, drawing on the clash between rich and poor in the wake of South African apartheid. Their music video for “Enter the Ninja” went viral in 2009, leading to a deal with Interscope Records and an international tour. In keeping with the Zef lifestyle, Die Antwoord left their major label and started their own, Zef Records, in 2011. MOST RECENT ALBUM: Ten$ion (Zef Records; 2012)
bands in existence, this a capella all-male singing troupe has been around for more than 40 years. Their fusion of traditional South African sounds with Christian gospel and even pop has set them apart and brought them to centre stage. Founded by lead singer, director and composer Joseph Shabalala, they’ve collaborated with Paul Simon and Melissa Etheridge, provided soundtrack material for The Lion King II, and have been invited to perform for Nelson Mandela, Queen Elizabeth II and the late Pope John Paul II. Oh, and they don’t mind getting recognition from the Grammys either, having been nominated 13 times since 1988, and winning three of those nominations, including most recently in 2009 in the “Best Traditional World Music Album” category for Ilembe: Honoring Shaka Zulu. MOST RECENT ALBUM: Songs From a Zulu Farm (Razor & Tie; 2011)
THE PARLOTONES (South Africa): Africa isn’t all drum circles and pan flutes, and even The Parlotones are proof that the continent didn’t escape the britpop epidemic of the ‘90s. Hailing from Johannesburg, The Parlotones is a traditional four-piece rock band known for churning out stadium anthems and harmonious ballads à la Coldplay. The band was signed to Universal Records, the world’s largest record company, but has failed to catch on in North America despite achieving moderate success in Europe. The band members won’t walk the streets of Cape Town or Johannesburg unnoticed, however, for they have achieved multi-platinum status in South Africa. The Parlotones performed alongside Shakira and The Black Eyed Peas at the FIFA World Cup Kick-Off Celebration Concert in 2010, and band members are also spokespersons for Live Earth and Earth Hour. MOST RECENT ALBUM: Eavesdropping on the Songs of Whales (Sovereign Entertainment; 2011) UPCOMING ALBUM: Journey Through the Shadows (Sovereign Entertainment; 2012)
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
MICHAEL KIWANUKA (Uganda): Fresh off backing Adele’s 2011 tour, Michael Kiwanuka is bound to bask in his tour mate’s glorious 2012 Grammy shutdown. The London-born 23-year-old is the offspring of two Ugandan refugees who fled the Amin regime, escaping political repression and mass killings that resulted in the deaths of up to 500,000 people in the 1970s. Kiwanuka lived quietly as a session guitarist until going solo in 2011 with his debut solo EP, Tell Me a Tale. Always with a guitar in hand, Kiwanuka is a wholesome, soulful crooner, reminiscent of Otis Redding and Bill Withers. Though he has yet to release an album, he beat out the much hyped Azealia Banks and Skrillex for the BBC’s Sound of 2012 poll. Past winners of the award include Jessie J, Adele and Ellie Goulding, so Kiwanuka is destined for stardom. MOST RECENT ALBUM: I’m Getting Ready [EP] (Communion Records; 2011) UPCOMING ALBUM: Home Again (Polydor; 2012)
(Madagascar): Not just another beautiful, exotic voice, Razia Said combines the traditional sounds of the small, ecologically isolated island of Madagascar with socially, environmentally and spiritually conscious messages. Despite having relocated to New York City to pursue her musical career, her love of Madagascar holds fast and shines through in her music. Zebu Nation, her latest release, is a collection of Malagasy songs with a new-age edge, written about her longing for her country in spite of the poverty, tribal dissonance and environmental suffering experienced there. The album serves as her way of raising awareness of the troubles of her homeland, which is being destroyed by slash-and-burn agriculture, climate change and industrial development. MOST RECENT ALBUM: Zebu Nation (Cumbancha; 2009)
FRESHLYGROUND (South Africa): This seven-piece Cape Town outfit has achieved international recognition for its ability to blend traditional African music with social commentary, yet simultaneously attract a mainstream pop appeal that defies demographics. Zolani Mahola, Freshlyground’s lyricist and energetic vocalist, always seems to sing through a smile. Mahola’s silky voice sails through piano, violin, guitar, mbira, saxophone and percussion instrumentals provided by her musical compadres who gather from Zimbabwe, Mozambique and South Africa to perform together. The band draws on kwela, the skiffling street dance music of South Africa, as well as African folk music, alternative rock and tin pan alley harmonies. Freshlyground became the first South African group to win the MTV Europe Award for Best African Act in 2006 and performed the official anthem for the 2010 FIFA World Cup with Shakira. MOST RECENT ALBUM: Radio Africa (Sony BMG Africa; 2010)
Graphics by Maya Pankalla Map by Katie Brioux
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
he first days back to school after any sort of break are always an interesting time. From getting back into getting up at a respectable hour, to reacquainting yourself with that girl who is always correcting the professor under her breath (you know who you are), it can be a trying time. Not to mention the fact that with midterms now behind you, it’s pretty much full on exam time when you get back from reading week. While one could get into hard drug use or religion to cope, there are better, and arguably healthier methods. Since the dawn of rock and roll in the late 1940s and early 1950s, there have been countless songs composed on the subject of school: getting back to school, fraternity life and hot-rod dissertations. This mixtape pretty much covers all aspects of the school experience. Enjoy.
Post-reading week rhapsody Compiled by Alex Woznica Staff writer
SIDE A: HOT FOR TEACHER
SIDE B: BE COOL, STAY IN SCHOOL
1. “Hot Rod Dissertation” - The Royal Pendletons - Oh Yeah, Baby 2. “No Class” - Motörhead - Overkill 3. “Fraternity, U.S.A.” - The Lady Bugs Fraternity, U.S.A. 4. “School’s Out” - The Spits - The Spits IV (School’s Out) 5. “Be True to Your School” - The Beach Boys - Little Deuce Coupe 6. “Schools are Prisons” - The Ex Pistols - Deny 7. “Good Morning Little Schoolgirl” - The Yardbirds - For Your Love 8. “Barbara” - The Modernettes - Teen City E.P. 9. “School Jerks” - The Veins - School Jerks 10. “Low Grades and High Fever” - Linda Laine & The Sinners - Freddie and the Dreamers and Other Great English Stars
11. “Scholastic Aptitude” - The Urinals Negative Capability 12. “Charlie Brown” - The Coasters - Charlie Brown 13. “High School Yum Yum” - The Donnas The Donnas 14. “School Days” - The Runaways - Waitin’ for the Night 15. “Hot Rod High” - The Hondells - Go Little Honda 16. “High School Nervous Breakdown” Forgotten Rebels - Boys Will be Boys 17. “Die Schule ist Aus” - Die Sweetles - Die Schule ist Aus 18. “High School Confidential” - Hasil Adkins - Out to Hunch 19. “Teach Your Children” - Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young - Déjà Vu 20. “Rock and Roll High School” - The Ramones - End of the Century
Band of Skulls - Sweet Sour (Electric Blues Records; 2012)
Young Liars - Homesick Future (Self-released; 2012)
Tennis - Young & Old (Fat Possum; 2012)
The Grateful Dead - American Beauty (Warner Bros. Records; 1970)
Sweet Sour is the second studio album from British trio Band of Skulls. Their sophomore effort brings back the gritty guitar riffs and smooth vocal harmonies that put Baby Darling Doll Face Honey on the alt-rock map, but fails to fully live up to the debut’s promise. The first half of Sweet Sour groups together all the heavy songs, which results in a feeling of “where did the album go?” as the second half closes with one meandering, slow number after another. As a whole, the album lacks expected creativity and plays on the safe side of the music industry, seemingly vying for a single on MTV and a radio hit. But its shortcomings don’t mean that it isn’t an enjoyable album. Stomp rock track “The Devil Takes Care of His Own” easily steals the spotlight as the best showcase of Russell Marsden’s catchy, dirty guitar riffing. It just never finds the breakthrough originality it needs.
Electro-indie group Young Liars will have you bobbing your head and swaying your hips along to their rhythmic tracks from their latest EP Homesick Future. The Vancouver-based band released their first EP in early 2011 and have plans to make their full-length album debut sometime in 2012, but have released both EPs to tide listeners over until then. All seven songs on Homesick Future have lengthy instrumentals that encompass you in the music. In contrast to the verses, the choruses have simple, repetitive lyrics, allowing the listener to pick them up in no time. Unfortunately, at times the music seems to overpower the vocals, creating a cacophony of sound that breaks the melodic flow. The songs on Homesick Future are catchy but easily forgotten, with the exception of the song “Colours” where the electronica background music, guitar riffs and fresh vocals mesh together perfectly. Overall, Homesick Future is good without being great.
A little over a year after disembarking from Cape Dory, husband-and-wife duo Tennis are landlocked and ready to release their sophomore album, Young & Old. Teaming up with The Black Keys’ drummer Patrick Carney to oversee the production, the album reveals an obvious divergence from Tennis’ previous songwriting with a more polished sound. A welcomed addition, Carney seems to lend a much needed structure to the songs. He is likely also responsible for a tinge of sass in lead vocalist Alaina Moore’s crooning vocals, especially demonstrated in R&B-inspired “My Better Self” and “Petition.” Despite the occasional quirk, the 10 tracks follow the same brisk-paced urgency, rendering the album monotonous. My main concern with Tennis is that they don’t seem to be able to find their voice. Remaining true to their kitschy sea-shanty act would become tiresome, but too big a change in any direction would cause fans to question their sincerity.
There aren’t too many people who can say they’ve mastered composing, poetry, songwriting, piano, banjo, guitar, pedal steel guitar, painting and drawing, all while missing a key digit from their right hand, but The Grateful Dead’s Jerry Garcia did, and American Beauty exemplifies his prowess. The classic jam band’s fifth studio album further cemented the Dead as one of America’s great, iconic jam bands with timeless hits like “Ripple,” “Box of Rain,” “Truckin’” and “Sugar Magnolia.” Building upon the country and folk styles of their previous albums, American Beauty epitomizes easy listening and pure audio delight. The album takes you on a voyage through 1960s America. All of the usual suspects are there: freedom, love, music, travel, luck, and of course, drugs. Anyone who hasn’t heard this album multiple times from beginning to end is doing a disservice to themselves. So, go make yourself a headband out of daisies, put on your tie-dye, and let this album move you in ways you never knew possible.
Trial track: “Wanderluster”
Trial track: “Colours”
Trial track: “My Better Self”
Trial track: “Till the Morning Comes”
- Lindsay Rempel
- Natasha Taggart
- Paul Traunero
- Allie Mason
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Write to the editor: email@example.com BASKETBALL
Mighty Stingers looking to quash potential playoff upset
Concordia enters playoffs as top seed in RSEQ Julian Mei Sports editor
Concordia wrapped up its season with two blowout wins on the weekend after falling out of the CIS top 10 for the first time since late November. The Stingers finished first in their conference with a 14-2 record, but suffered a loss to last place Bishop’s on Feb. 10, clearly weighing on the minds of those who vote for the top 10. If Concordia is looking to send a message to the country, now is the time to do it. Feeling overlooked by the rest of the CIS, the Stingers will have a chance to prove themselves on a national stage— that is, if they can make it out of their conference. The RSEQ playoffs begin Wednesday against Laval, with Concordia looking to return to the CIS national championship tournament for the second straight year. Concordia has been dominant against the Quebec schools this year, but a streaking McGill team that seems to be peaking at the right time poses the greatest threat to the Stingers. Right now the teams seem to be on a collision course to meet in the RSEQ finals on Saturday. However, with the RSEQ playoffs operating on a single-game elimination format, there is no room for error. Overlooking an opponent, like what happened
a few weeks ago against Bishop’s, can send even the most talented teams home earlier than expected. Concordia coach John Dore isn’t taking anything for granted. “At this stage it’s like starting a new season,” he said. “It’s basically a two-game season to see who makes it out of Quebec. I’m happy how we played to close out the season. We’ve approached things one game at a time all year and that’s not going to change.” If Concordia were to make a return trip to nationals, it would certainly be an underdog in the tournament. Despite the intra-conference success, Concordia has yet to beat an out-of-conference opponent ranked in the CIS top 10. The road to a championship, barring a major upset, will also run through the Carleton Ravens, who completed their season with a perfect record. Dore is refusing to look that far ahead though, saying his team’s focus is on Wednesday and nothing else. This year’s playoffs will also be the final time guard Decee Krah and forward James Clark will step on a basketball court in Stingers uniforms. Both players are in their final year of eligibility and a championship would no doubt be the perfect way for them to end their tremendous collegiate careers. The regular season is over. All of the practices, days at the gym and long bus rides amount to this. A series of do-or-die games for players to achieve the ultimate goal: winning the final game of the season. And it all starts Wednesday.
Team s Previous Meetings
Concordia 88 Laval 66
Nov. 19 Jan. 20
Editor s Crystal Ball Concordia 82
CONCORDIA WILL FACE LAVAL IN THE OPENING ROUND OF THE PLAYOFFS ON WEDNESDAY. PHOTO BY NAVNEET PALL
Golden weekend for Concordia men’s wrestling Stingers bring home eight individual medals and team gold Julian Mei Sports editor
For the second consecutive year, the Concordia wrestling team will be returning home from the CIS national championship with some serious hardware. The men won the team championship in Thunder Bay, Ont. over the weekend, narrowly edging out University of Regina, 56 points to 54, bringing home five medals in total.
It was a nail-biting finish to the tournament. With Regina wrestler Gaelan Malloy wrestling in the 62 kg gold medal match, Malloy injured his ankle early and his coach eventually threw in the towel, not wishing to risk his wrestler’s health. If Malloy had gone on to win his match, Regina and Concordia would have each had 56 points, with Regina holding the tie-breaker of most gold medals (3-2). “I don’t think (Malloy) was going to win anyways, he was going against a better wrestler,” said Concordia’s assistant coach David Zilberman. “That’s part of competition. Things happen.” Concordia came into the year with high expectations, but was aware of how quickly things can go awry. “We came in with an open mind,” said Zil-
berman. “We have to expect the worst because anything can happen, but just being prepared is the most important thing.” Several Concordia wrestlers, both men and women, brought home medals. The women finished ninth out of 13 in the team standings, but still had athletes reach the podium. Nikita Chicoine had the best finish among the Stinger women, winning a silver medal in the 63 kg weight category. Linda Morais won bronze in the 59 kg weight class and her teammate Veronica Keefe also came away with the bronze medal in the 72 kg category. Things were golden on the men’s side. David Tremblay and James Mancini both found themselves standing on the top of the podium in the 61
kg and 65 kg categories, respectively. Scott Schiller won silver for the Stingers and left his coaches very impressed with his effort. “He was wrestling two weight classes up,” said Zilberman. “He was much smaller than his opponents and still managed to beat the number one seeded wrestler in the first round.” First-year wrestler Nariman Irankhah won a bronze medal in the 82 kg class and Greg Rossy also came in third in his weight class. The Concordia men were close to winning even more than an astonishing five medals, with two wrestlers, Noel Tremblay and Mitchell Krauter, finishing just off the podium in fourth place of their respective categories. Head coach Victor Zilberman was also named coach of the year.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Playoffs a chance for Concordia to hit the refresh button Stingers look to atone for late season struggles Julian Mei Sports editor
t was a tale of two seasons for the Concordia womenâ€™s basketball team. A 6-0 start was accompanied with a 2-8 finish, leaving the Stingers with an 8-8 record, and a second place finish in the RSEQ. The second place finish means Concordia gets home court for at least the first round of the playoffs, a huge advantage seeing as the Stingers have not won a game on the road since a Jan. 20 victory in Ste-Foy against Laval. Likewise, Concordia will be facing the Bishopâ€™s Gaiters who are 1-7 on the road this season but a solid home record carried them to a 7-9 season. Bishopâ€™s lost both games they played in Concordiaâ€™s gym this season. Many of the Stingersâ€™ struggles can be attributed to nothing more than bad luck. The team was bitten by the injury bug coming out of the Christmas break. Natasha Raposo, one of the teamâ€™s best outside shooters, missed a significant chunk of time. Kaylah Barrett, who was recently named RSEQ player of the year, saw her production drop dramatically later in the season as she was forced to play through hand and back injuries. Barrett sat out for Concordiaâ€™s final game of the season hoping to rest up for the playoffs. Concordia dropped its final two games of the year, a 44-42 home loss to UQAM, and a 16-point blowout loss against Laval on the road. While no team wants to back in to the playoffs, the final two games meant very little in the standings as the Stingers were virtually locked in to second place, and it was more important for the team to rest some players. The teamâ€™s struggles down the stretch would soon be forgotten if Concordia was able to win the conference and advance to the national championships in Calgary. However, an early exit on home court would be a disappointing end to a season that had began so promisingly and with high expectations. Bishopâ€™s has been a middle of the pack team for most of the season, but games between the Gaiters and the Stingers have been very close. Save for a 71-40 blowout Stingers victory that snapped Concordia out of a five-game losing streak on Feb. 10, all the games between the two teams have been decided by four points or fewer. Concordia is the more talented team, but a lot will depend on just how healthy Barrett actually is. The Stingers are the best team in the conference defensively, but have had spurts where theyâ€™ve shot the ball horrendously. If the shots arenâ€™t falling on Tuesday night against Bishopâ€™s, it could spell trouble for the Stingers. However, if the offensive is clicking, the Stingers should be able to advance into the next round, and likely face top-seeded McGill. Concordia and McGill split the season series this year. It has been a Jekyll and Hyde season for Concordia. The playoffs will provide the opportunity to see the teamâ€™s true identity. The game is Tuesday, Feb. 28 at 7 p.m. at Loyola.
Team s Previous Meetings
BU 59 ConU 71 BU 44
Players to watch Concordia: Kaylah Barrett- Guard- # 4 Barrett was just named the RSEQâ€™s most outstanding player. She averaged 16.1 points per game this year, but has been struggling since mid-January. In the teamâ€™s weekend loss to UQAM, Barrett scored a seasonlow four points on just 1-10 shooting. She will need to battle through her nagging injuries if the Stingers want to contend for a championship. Bishopâ€™s: Jessy Roy - Guard- #10 It will be Royâ€™s job to shut down Barrett. Roy was named RSEQ defensive player of the year on the same day Barrett won most outstanding. If Roy makes Barrettâ€™s life difficult, Bishopâ€™s certainly has a reasonable chance to upset the Stingers.
Editor s Crystal Ball The Stingers are more talented, but injuries have the team pretty beat up. Home court advantage will be the deciding factor in the match-up. Concordia 57
KAYLAH BARRETT BATTLED INJURIES AND STILL WON RSEQ MVP. PHOTO BY NAVNEET PALL
!"#$ % !& '" "$ "%
( ( "# )" * *& !" +# $ #$, - " "#
./00 - 1 1 2(1 3 45 046 3604307
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Write to the editor: firstname.lastname@example.org
ASFA elections have become a joke Confusion and violations have lead to lack of accountability
What exactly is going on with the Arts and Science Federation of Associations’ elections? The general elections that were supposed to be held from Feb. 15 to 17, then pushed to Feb. 29, and now pushed again (for the final time?) to March 5, have only succeeded in further confusing arts and science students about their own electoral process. Given the fact that ASFA also had a total electoral meltdown during its byelection last fall, it has become clear that concrete changes need to be brought to the way the federation runs its elections. Upon Chris Webster’s resignation as chief electoral officer just hours before polling began on Feb. 15, the ASFA executive should have immediately taken action to fill his position, thereby allowing the elections to resume as soon as possible. Instead, the executive scrambled to run the show themselves. When they failed to do that,
they announced, on the same day that polling was set to end, that the elections would be postponed until Feb. 29 due to “procedural complications.” Not only that, but ASFA declared that all electoral ballots would be voided -- so much for the countless arts and science students who actually took the time to exercise a right they’re so often criticized for not doing. Want to bet they will be interested in voting again in the March 5 election? And how exactly was the executive planning on getting the word out in the first place that the elections had been postponed? They never modified their website, nor their Facebook account, and the only time ASFA took to Twitter during the electoral catastrophe was to tweet about ASFA’s New York trip. While members of the student press were reporting on the breakdown throughout spring break, particularly The Concordian, which offered comprehensive coverage of the election controversy online, ASFA remained surprisingly silent on its own platforms. It’s safe to say that ASFA is not winning any brownie points at the moment, and is certainly not inspiring any confidence among its 14,000 members.
ASFA has already taken a lot of heat for standing idly by, along with its judicial committee, while former CEO Marvin Cidamon committed several electoral violations during last October’s byelection, violations that eventually lead to his resignation just before council sacked him. One of the more notable blunders Cidamon committed was failing to alert the media about the byelection’s victors, telling The Concordian at the time that “had you not asked me, I would have never given you the results.” When ASFA President Alex Gordon declared that they would learn from their mistakes in October, his statement seemed almost believable. Council eventually hired a new CEO, Christopher Webster, in December, who Gordon described at the time as being very qualified for the job, and who was seen as the person to set things straight when it came to elections. However, Webster also showed failings in terms of his job capabilities early on, allowing a candidate to switch positions after the announcement of the candidacies -- a decision eventually overturned by the judicial committee -- and failing to answer questions about the electoral process from the student press. His resigna-
tion was hardly surprising. ASFA is now left with a huge question: What can it do to actually run smooth, transparent elections? It has already failed to do that twice, and it seems unlikely that it will be able to do this in the near future. Already, Gordon has gone on record saying that although holding the elections on March 5 goes against ASFA’s own bylaws -- because they will be held at the same time as the Concordia Student Union campaign period -- it’s become “necessary” to break the bylaws. One can only imagine the backlash such a decision will ignite. It’s understandable that ASFA wants to elect its new executive as soon as possible so that they can start to get to work on projects for next year. But rapidity should not be prioritized over fairness and the rules. ASFA executives need to get a new CEO and need to hold their elections in a period when they are actually allowed to do so. Ultimately, the federation needs to learn its own rules. Had it done so in the past, and helped its CEOs to understand the regulations as well, ASFA would not be in this mess in the first place.
Why is Quebec acting as if it has something to hide? Hidden data worsens image of the province’s high school dropout rate Audrey Folliot Staff writer Quebec has the highest high school dropout rate in Canada, but apparently we shouldn’t know or be concerned about it. At least, that’s the message that the Ministry of Education is sending to the population by refusing to disclose the graduation data of hundreds of Quebec high schools to QMI Agency. This data should be made public if we want something to be done to tackle the issue. According to QMI, the Cree School Board in northern Quebec recorded the highest dropout rate in the province in 2009-2010, with 90.1 per cent of students dropping out of high school. Quebec Education Minister Line Beauchamp says that they will not release the data for “reasons of sensitivity” and students’ self-esteem. Is that really a valid reason? Absolutely not. Theresa Bianco, undergraduate program director in Concordia’s department of psychology, believes that this reason is only a smokescreen. “The ministry probably just wants to cover up how bad it is by not releasing the data,” she said. “They want to protect themselves.” Hiding the dropout rate from the population won’t make it any lower. According to Statistics Canada, the dropout rate in Quebec between 2007 and 2010 was the highest in Canada at 11.7 per cent. The highest numbers were found in Quebec’s First Nations communities. We must ask ourselves: Why is the dropout rate so high to begin with? The ministry wants to hide the numbers because it’s scared of the population’s reaction, fearing it would get criti-
cized for not putting enough effort into reducing the dropout rate. The main reason for such a high rate is the lack of help given to students with learning disabilities. Teenagers who struggle to succeed in their classes are more likely to dropout of school when they turn 16, an age at which they are legally allowed to do so. If the government puts a stronger focus on helping students cope with their learning disabilities, the dropout rate would probably fall. “There definitely is a lot more that can be done at a legislative level,” said Bianco. “Identifying the students at risk of dropping out and helping them succeed is one solution, because their schooling environment is definitely not suitable for their learning needs at the moment.” Another reason is that there are no consequences for students who do not get a high school degree. Having the most basic level of education is not even a requirement to get certain jobs. However, if employers required that all their employees have a high school degree in order to get the most basic job, I’m sure that a lot more people would actually finish high school. “Right now, there are no repercussions for students that drop out before they finish high school, with regards to jobs for example,” said Bianco. “But there should be, and I can’t stress enough how important I think it is to finish high school.”
Graphic by Katie Brioux
Will grad students strike? There are 56,000 students on strike in Quebec to defend accessible post-secondary education. Will graduate students at Concordia University join them? That’s up to you. On Tuesday, March 6, at noon in H-110 (the Hall building), the Graduate Students’ Association will hold a general assembly to vote on whether to join the student strike, and if so whether to join the CLASSE, a Quebec-wide student organization formed to coordinate the strike
among different student unions. Information will also be available for international students and students who are not taking classes. Many graduates are also organizing info sessions and strike votes at the departmental level. If you’d like to be one of them, contact email@example.com. Holly Nazar VP external, GSA
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Big brother needs to stay out of our computers Bill C-30 putting our privacy in jeopardy Andre Joseph Cordeiro Staff writer
he past few weeks have been filled with outrage over a proposed bill in the House of Commons. The Protecting Children From Internet Predators Act would give law enforcement agencies unprecedented access to the Internet usage of Canadians. Specifically, it would allow for the acquiring of logs on user activity, based on the IP address assigned by the Internet service provider at that time. These logs would be available without the need for a warrant. Public Safety Minister Vic Toews even went so far as to deal in absolutes: “You can either stand with us [the government] or with the child pornographers.” I’m with the privacy advocates. Child pornography is a horrific crime, but violating standard civil liberties, such as the due process of getting a warrant, does not bode well for a free-minded society like Canada. After reading through the actual law, it is clear that the victims are being used as cover, essentially creating a license to snoop. Besides, Mr. Toews has proved to
form census…they told us our right to privacy was threatened by egregious intrusions from the state.” There have been those who agree with Mr. Toews’ proposed legislation. Lorna Dueck, in a column for The Globe and Mail, stated that “if we don’t get this right, more children will be violated [...] With this kind of cyber crime, surfing the Internet is akin to driving your car. The car is your private property and you know how to use it, but some people keep making the road dangerous [...] that’s how police see access to your IP address - it will help them to identify lawbreakers.” Asinine. Why don’t we extend the provisions to give the government access to every transaction we make? After all, by that logic, some people might be making dangerous purchases. Why not extend the reaches even further, requiring logs of citizens’ whereabouts, since some might potentially be breaking the law? Violating civil liberties, such as warrant-less snooping, is never acceptable, even in the name of protecting children. The question is how do we, as Canadians, stop child predators while protecting our right to privacy? It is a hard question, one I do not have the answer to. Rest assured, however,
the tax experts
I GOT MY MONEY’S WORTH
“You can either stand with us [the government] or with the child pornographers.” - Vic Toews
the Canadian public how incompetent and hypocritical he is. When a Twitter account popped up, delivering juicy details of the Manitoba MP’s divorce (which were public record), he quickly proposed an investigation into the leak. Strange, coming from the man who wants us to give up a part of our right to privacy. When asked about some of the more draconian elements of the legislation, he admitted he did not even read the bill before introducing it. Really, and yet he is willing to risk his reputation, and more importantly, Canadian citizen rights, over its passing? Margaret Wente pointed out perfectly in her column in The Globe and Mail that these are the same Conservatives who “whipped up moral panic over the gun registry and the long-
that it is not by giving unfettered access to the logs. To me, treating your populace as criminals is a feeble response to the problem. I’m sorry, Mr. Toews. I am not a pervert. If you want to see what I post on Reddit, what I share on Facebook, who I email in Gmail, and what I share in uTorrent, get a warrant. Otherwise, mind your own business. As Rick Mercer, in his weekly rant on the Rick Mercer Report put it: “Vic, you can call us all the names you want. But that doesn’t change the fact we’re not going to let you peek. That doesn’t make us criminal. It makes us Canadian. It’s why we shut our blinds at night. The State has no business in the hard drives of the nation. You want a peek, Vic? Convince a judge. Get a warrant.”
H&R Block offers special student pricing. I take advantage of it every year. Best of all, they get students like me an average refund of $1,000.*
STUDENT TAX PREP
And FREE SPC card** hrblock.ca | 800-HRBLOCK (472-5625) © 2012 H&R Block Canada, Inc. *Average is based on all student returns prepared at H&R Block in Canada from January 1, 2011 to May 2, 2011 for 2010 tax returns. The average refund amount calculated for students was over $1,100 CAD. This amount cannot be guaranteed and varies based on each individual tax situation. **$29.95 valid for regular student tax preparation only. Cash Back service included. To qualify for student pricing, student must present either (i) a T2202a documenting 4 or more months of full-time attendance at a college or university during 2011 or (ii) a valid high school identification card. Expires July 31, 2012. Valid only at participating H&R Block locations in Canada. SPC Card offers valid from 08/01/11 to 07/31/12 at participating locations in Canada only. For Cardholder only. Offers may vary, restrictions may apply. Usage may be restricted when used in conjunction with any other offer or retailer loyalty card discounts. Cannot be used towards the purchase of gift cards or certificates.
What did you think of this paper? Send us your letters to the editor to firstname.lastname@example.org before Friday at 4 p.m. The Concordian reserves the right to edit your letters for length, clarity, taste and style. Letters are limited to 400 words.
The Etcetera Page
Drink of the week
Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2012 Vol. 29 issue 22
The Julian Mei Rum and Coke
Managing editor email@example.com
Production manager firstname.lastname@example.org
The Republican primaries in the United States can sometimes bring a smile to our faces, with some presidential hopefuls making statements that have the Twitter world raving. Mitt Romney stole the spotlight on Saturday while making a campaign speech in Detroit, when he tried to relate to voters in the auto industry-dominated state of Michigan by mentioning that his wife “drives a couple of Cadillacs actually”.
JOEL ASHAK MARILLA STEUTER-MARTIN
Co-news editors email@example.com
PAULA RIVAS Life editor
Assistant life editor firstname.lastname@example.org
AMANDA L. SHORE
Assistant arts editor email@example.com
@thelittleidiot: My wife has two cadillacs”.
“I don’t care about the very poor”. “I like firing people” -mitt romney quotes. Is he actually Mr. Burns? @morningmoneyben: For the love of Pete,
Romney really said his wife drives a couple of cadillacs? it would be better for that campaign if he didn’t speak. @seanba: Advice for #Romney: Next time
get your wife to fill a couple of her Cadillacs with supporters and drive them to the stadium. @markos: Romney defense for wife having
multiple Cadillacs is that they have garages in all those houses of theirs to stock. No joke @pourmecoffee: Special advisor to the
Assistant music editor firstname.lastname@example.org
- 4 oz. of spiced rum - 8 oz. of Coca-Cola, Diet Coke or RC Cola (optional) - 1 slice of lime (optional) - 2 iced cubes (optional)
Assistant sports editor email@example.com
Assistant opinions editor firstname.lastname@example.org
Graphic by Katie Brioux
It is virtually impossible to order this refreshing and inebriating delicacy at the bar so you will likely have to make it at home or school. Pour four ounces (eyeballed, no need to dirty a shot glass) into a glass or Tupperware container depending whether or not you’re trying to impress someone. Pour in roughly twice as much cola. Add ice and lime. Stir it with your finger. Enjoy.
Romney campaign Rick Ross suggested Romney brag about how many cadillacs he had. Next up: Maybachs
- Julian Mei
Graphics editor email@example.com
MARISSA MILLER HEATHER RIMINGTON ELIZABETH TOMARAS
Copy editors firstname.lastname@example.org
JENNIFER BARKUN SOPHIA LOFFREDA KERRY MACKINNON
7141 Sherbrooke St. W. - CC.431 Montreal, QC H4B 1R6
This week s impossible crossword
514.848.2424 x7499 (Editor-in-Chief) 514.848.2424 x7458 (Newsroom)
514.848.2424 x7404 (Production)
1- Accumulate; 6- Blind as _ ; 10- Dirty Harry’s org.; 14- Smooth transition; 15Lecherous look; 16- “…countrymen, lend me your _ “; 17- Common person of ancient Rome; 18- Ethereal: Prefix; 19- Civil disturbance; 20- Swagger; 21Norm; 23- Aussie hopper; 25- Thrice, in prescriptions; 26- Swedish auto; 29Thick cord; 32- Bridge positions; 37- FedEx rival; 38- Insult; 39- Capital of Zimbabwe; 40- Hallucinatory; 43- Land, as a fish; 44- Ages and ages; 45- Aardvark morsel; 46- John of “The Addams Family”; 47- Diary of _ Housewife; 48Black cuckoos; 49- “As if!”; 51- Family card game; 53- Carved female figure used as a column; 58- Regular course; 62- Celebrity; 63- Norse god of thunder; 64- Author Calvino; 65- Not much; 66Mandlikova of tennis; 67- Glossy fabric; 68- London district; 69- Bouillabaisse, e.g.; 70- First name in cosmetics;
MELISSA KATE GAGNON
Business manager Interim advertising manager email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
BRENNAN NEILL EMILY WHITE CINDY LOPEZ RUBEN BASTIEN
Board of Directors email@example.com
BUSINESS AND ADVERTISING
1455 de Maisonneuve W. - H.733-4 Montreal, QC H3G 1M8 514.848.2424 x7420 (Office) 514.848.7427 (Fax)
STAFF WRITERS AND CONTRIBUTORS
DOWN 1- Cairo cobras; 2- Dissolve; 3- Antiquing agent; 4- District adjacent to a city; 5- Handle; 6- Exclamation to express sorrow; 7- Sugar source; 8- Add fizz; 9- Triple; 10- Antitoxins; 11- Free from bias; 12- Goad; 13- Summer hrs.; 22Visions; 24- Synthetic fiber; 26- Above; 27- Church areas; 28- So far; 30- Escape;
Photo editor firstname.lastname@example.org
31- Introduction; 33- 100 square meters; 34- Old Nick; 35- Singer Lopez; 36- Religious offshoots; 38- Simple variety of hockey; 39- Caste member; 41- Second-
century date; 42- Extinct bird, once found in New Zealand; 47- Besides; 48- Main arteries; 50- Vows; 52- Racket; 53- Roman censor; 54- Eastern nanny;
55- Fix up; 56- Actress Skye; 57No-win situation; 59- Inner layer of a quilt; 60- Netman Nastase; 61- Accent; 62- Scale notes;
Kalina Laframboise, Marie-Josee Kelly, Alyssa Tremblay, Brandon Judd, Madelon Kirov, Christine Beaton, Stephanie Laleggia, Leah Batstone, Anouare Abdou, Max Blatherwick, Stephanie Mercier Voyer, Elysha Del GiustoEnos, Giselle MacDonald, Alex Woznica, Lindsay Rempel, Paul Traunero, Natasha Taggart, Andre Joseph Cordeiro, Audrey Folliot, Sean Kershaw, Phil Waheed, Maya Pankalla, Julien Appolon
Concordia s weekly, independent student newspaper.
Follow us on Twitter: @TheConcordian
+FILM - L’Esprit du vin – Le Réveil des terroirs - Cinema du Parc - 19h00 +MUSIC - The Twilight Sad + Forest Fire - Il Motore - 20h00 +THEATRE - The History of the Devil - Theatre Rouge - 20h00 +MUSIC - Ainsley Mcneaney - Le Dépanneur Café - 13h00 +MUSIC - YouYourself&i + Charred Chalkboard - Casa Del Popolo - 20h30 +LITERATURE- CASE Open Mic Night-Kafein-19h00
+THEATRE - The History of the Devil - Theatre Rouge - 20h00 +THEATRE - Rhinoceros and Play - Les Ateliers Jean-Brillant - 20h00 +MUSIC - Les Cowboys Frigants - La Tulipe - 20h00 +MUSIC - The Custom Outfit + Bad Uncle - Casa Del Popolo - 20h30 +MUSIC - Midnight Romeo + Low Level Flight + The Fadeout - La Sala Rossa - 20h30
+FILM - I Wish - CinéRobothèque - 18h00 +THEATRE - The History of the Devil - Theatre Rouge - 20h00 +ART MATTERS - Opening party - The Darling Foundry - 20h30 +THEATRE - Rhinoceros and Play - Les Ateliers Jean-Brillant - 20h00 +MUSIC - Rosetta - Casa Del Popolo - 20h30 +MUSIC - Bombay Bicycle Club + The Darcys - Le Cabaret du Mile End - 20h30 +MUSIC - Kumpa’nia - La Sala Rossa - 20h00
+VERNISSAGE - Images des Femmes - Rialto Theatre 13h30 +THEATRE - The History of the Devil - Theatre Rouge 20h00 +THEATRE - Rhinoceros and Play - Les Ateliers Jean-Brillant - 20h00 +MUSIC - Young the Giant - Theatre Corona - 21h00 +MUSIC - Femme Accident + Fleshmoves + Glass Passenger - Casa Del Popolo - 21h00 +MUSIC - Deadmeat Tour 2012 : Steve Aoki + Datsik Métropolis - 21h00 +ART MATTERS - Art of Survival speaker series - VAV Gallery - 14h00 +THEATRE - Rhinoceros and Play - Les Ateliers Jean-Brillant - 20h00
+CINEMA POLITICA - Tears of Gaza - H-110 - 19h00 +MUSIC - The Wooden Sky - La Sala Rossa - 20h00 +MUSIC - Krista Muir + Gambletron Noize Karaoke + DJ Oggy - Casa Del Popolo - 20h30
Join the team The Concordian is now hiring for 2012-2013. All editorial positions are now open for applications. Managing Editor • Editor-in-Chief • Production Manager
News Editor Music Editor Graphics Editor Opinions Editor Photo Editor
Webmaster Sports Editor Social Media Coordinator Online Editor
Send your CV, cover letter and a writing sample to directors @theconcordian.com * Deadline for Editor-in-Chief, Managing Editor and Production Manager is March 9. Application for all other positions must be submitted by March 16 for consideration.